In honor of Memorial Day, this week’s fun fact takes a look at the historic military memorial wall at Long Beach’s Rosie the Riveter Park.
Rosie The Riveter Park, located at 4900 E. Conant St., continues to evolve with the intention of honoring all who have served America during wartime, most recently adding the ‘Honoring Our Fallen’ Memorial Wall which includes the names of anyone from Long Beach who died while on active duty – whether it happened during training, combat, an accident, or other tragic means. The memorial wall at Rosie the Riveter Park is truly a unique, historic and reflective place in the city, almost as if the sound of gentle taps can be heard in the wind. It’s definitely a place to be revered.
The serene park also boasts a modern interactive element where visitors can call a phone number to listen to a narration of the history of the Rosie the Riveters and World War II while walking a lined path that has flashing solar lights, making it look like a runway. There are also banners honoring the 15 people from Long Beach who died in Iraq and Afghanistan since the Sept. 11 Attacks.
When the city dedicated the park, local councilwoman Gerrie Schipske invited some of the original Rosie the Riveters, who were still alive and who had worked in the Long Beach aircraft plant during World War II.
“We had a pretty good turnout,” Gerrie recalled of the dedication day. “One of the [original Rosies] came up to me and had a scrapbook with her pay stubs from the 1940s and her badge [from working at the Douglas plant]. She was crying and she said to me, ‘I never thought anybody would have remembered what we did.’ That touched me a lot.”
Stop by Rosie the Riveter Park and experience its visceral emotion and serenity, and honor our fallen this Memorial Day weekend.