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Memorial Pavilion at Wichita County Cemetery to Honor Glen Eickman and Veterans

<br> <P>Plans are in the works to construct a pavilion at the Wichita County Cemetery.</P> <P>The project is still in the early stages, but as Mechell Dixon found out, the push is on to make this dream become a reality.</P>

The North Texas Veterans Council is spearheading the project for the pavilion that will honor the late Glen Eickman as well as all veterans.

For retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Cleveland Pratt, honoring veterans is a top priority.

That's why he's taken over a project to bring a pavilion to the Wichita County Cemetery.

"The original idea was Glen Eickman's who was a retired Navy Chief Petty Officer," says Pratt, President of the North Texas Veterans Council.

Eickman died in late November shortly after being diagnosed with cancer.

But before his death, Eickman started the groundwork on a pavilion at the cemetery which coordinators say will make events here during inclement weather more tolerable.

"We did have a ceremony out here one time for Glen Eickman's funeral and it did rain," Pratt.

"The heat's probably even more of a problem than... the adverse weather you can plan on but once it's real hot, an umbrella can keep you in some shade. This will provide both," says Wichita County Judge Woody Gossom.

The pavilion will sit near the flag pole at the cemetery and provide a covered area for people to sit and stand during events held there.

"In our sudden loss of Glen, we don't want to lose recognizing what his contributions were," says Judge Gossom.

So in honor of the man who started the project it will be The Glen Eickman Veterans Memorial Pavilion.

Since the pavilion project at the county cemetery was the Eickman's idea, his wife wants his ashes displayed at the memorial.

County architects are currently including that in this project, which is expected to carry a price tag of about $30,000.

If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to the cemetery pavilion contact Judge Gossom's office weekdays during business hours at (940) 766-8101.

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