Monday, November 20, 2023

WWII Memorial Latest Updates and News

November 2023 Newsletter

November is a Month for Giving Thanks

Honoring Our Veterans

On November 11th board members John and Judy Maten and Debi Hollis gathered at Centennial Commons for the City of Royal Oak's Veterans Day ceremony. The Michigan WWII Legacy Memorial hosted a continental breakfast for those in attendance.

We would like to thank Arts, Beats, & Eats for their donation of coffee and bagels, provided and served by Mike Keith of The Office Coffee Shop in Royal Oak. We would also like to thank Give Thanks Bakery of Royal Oak for their donation of pastries.

Fundraising Continues in Full Force

The board has been working to raise $2 million to complete the Memorial as designed. To help us reach this goal, Joan Clarke has joined the team as our chief campaign strategist.

Joan is the founder and CEO of 2Hearts Consulting. She has orchestrated campaigns across the country for over 280 clients in the past forty years, raising over $4 billion.

Within the next few weeks we will be launching a state-wide fundraising campaign. Michigan's Greatest Generation worked together to help win WWII. It will take all of us working together (again) to complete The Michigan WWII Legacy Memorial in their honor. If you would like to meet with Joan to hear more about our campaign, please contact her at

Make your donation today.

Campaign Updates:

  • We want to thank the Family of Aarol W. "Bud" & Elaine M. Corbat Irish for their gift of $10,000. We are truly grateful for their generous donation. Many members of the Irish family attended the Phase 1 dedication in August. They were thrilled to see one of their father's quotes from the book A Thousand Letters Home featured on the Mail Call plaque. This book was written by his daughter Teresa K. Irish, based on Bud's wartime correspondence.
  • We were pleased to receive a $25,000 grant from the Royal Oak Community Opportunity Fund. The grant was announced at the City of Royal Oak Commission meeting on November 13th.

Top photo: Army WWII veteran Aaron "Bud" Irish. Bottom photo: The family of Bud and Elaine Irish at the Phase 1 dedication


As the Allies raced to defeat Hitler, four men, all in the same unit, earned medal after medal for battlefield heroism. Maurice "Footsie" Britt, a former professional football player, became the very first American to receive every award for valor in a single war. Michael Daly was a West Point dropout who risked his neck over and over to keep his men alive. Keith Ware would one day become the first and only draftee in history to attain the rank of general before serving in Vietnam. In WWII, Ware owed his life to the finest soldier he ever commanded, a baby-faced Texan named Audie Murphy. In the campaign to liberate Europe, each would gain the ultimate accolade, the Congressional Medal of Honor.


Tapping into personal interviews and a wealth of primary source material, Alex Kershaw has delivered his most gripping account yet of American courage, spanning more than six hundred days of increasingly merciless combat, from the deserts of North Africa to the dark heart of Nazi Germany. Once the guns fell silent, these four exceptional warriors would discover just how heavy the Medal of Honor could be—and how great the expectations associated with it. Having survived against all odds, who among them would finally find peace? (Taken from the Amazon review)

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The Michigan WW2 Legacy Memorial | P.O. Box 8237, Royal Oak, MI 48068 (248)246-7280
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