Jayson Wood presents on the Lav III monument project
by Lucie Roy
At Wednesday’s Rotary Club of Morinville breakfast meeting, guest speaker Jayson Wood, Lav III Project Manager, presented to the club on his hopes to have one of the military vehicles in Morinville. The decommissioned Lav III is stripped of everything but can have its tires left on. The monument is made from the hull.
“The project is coming back to the surface because the recreation centre is coming to and that through public opinion and insight and such it seems that to be a very favourable place to have something such as this,” Wood said. “I also have in attendance Mayor Barry Turner, and we have talked a bit (on the project).”
Wood went on to say the reason for inviting the mayor was because they had a brief discussion last year along with other members and looked at the project as a point of Community Services and how to approach Rotary.
Wood said the proposed location would be at the new recreation centre, just east of town.
“The monument, a permanent community symbol of remembrance which pays respect to our Canadian Armed Forces who served and sacrificed in Afghanistan from 2001 to 2014, would be located at the Rec Centre,” Wood said. “This is the proposed location along the Highway. Being that Highway 642 is a main road to the base going east, thousands of vehicles annually go up and down that road. That is really high exposure for the base and members, for the people of the community.”
Last time Wood advocated for the Lav III, it was to be by the pump house. This was considered to be a less than ideal location. Wood feels with the 77 acres of land the Town purchased for the rec centre, it could be a suitable site for a Lav III.
“This could be part of a new project coming,” said Mayor Barry Turner during the meeting.
Wood said a military museum in Calgary is currently trying to acquire one of the Lav IIIs as well, but are having a bit of difficulty because of their proximity to Airdrie, who already having a Lav IIII.
“This Lav III will honour the entire mission of those people,” Wood said. “It will include all Canadian Afghan veterans, the plaques, and acknowledgements, sacrifices of all soldiers as a whole and nothing additional to that.”
Wood said he sees the initiative as a community project and not just a town project. “I believe it is a project that should be coming from the community directly and that it should be including everyone,” he said.
Wood said the last call has been made for the production, so there are applications already being sent in. The application has an eight-week window for approval in which the Lav III Monument Selection Committee will review all qualified applications and award monuments to communities who meet the criteria .
“Once awarded it is at that time when the official commitment hits, when the official documents start taking place,” Wood explained.
Mayor Barry Turner said one of the reasons he attended the meeting after talking to Wood was to talk about the 10-day window.
“If Rotary was interested in picking up the project then the town would need to do something quickly in order to submit that application so that it is in process,” Turner said. “Otherwise, we may lose that opportunity. That is why I am here to see what kind of reactions and support there are for the project, and if Rotary were interested then we could potentially submit that application and make sure it is in process to at least have the opportunity for that application to be submitted. I do not know if there is another round. I don’t know how many other opportunities there are.”
Budget and cost
Wood said the conceptual budget for the project is $63,300. The Lav III unit costs $15,000. Site preparations are another $6,000, and the mandatory monument pad comes in at more than $8,000. The project manager said the full cost of the project is variable with Stantec, who would develop the placement of the Lav III, depending on how basic or elaborate the project would be.
Wood said he has already reached out to re-establish connections with CN, Stantec, and Lafarge.
“A lot of them are interested in getting back on the project,” he said. “At the same time, I think that there is an opportunity to maybe look into the networking of Rotary and what the Rotary network has and can possibly take advantage of this project and provide it in an area such as this.”
The vehicle delivery would be in August or September of 2018, roughly a year before the rec centre is scheduled to open.
Rotary member Gordon Boddez said the project should be linked somehow to the construction of the rec centre making it easy to blend it in, especially with the crane on site.
Lav III in Alberta
There are already established Lav III monuments in Alberta with Lacombe, Fort McMurray and Airdrie each having one. The community of Lacombe located an hour down the road and approximately 163 kilometres from Morinville has acquired a Lav III. The monument is installed at Veterans Field of Honour within Fairview Cemetery. The cemetery is also the final resting place of Master Corporal Byron Greff, the last CAF member killed in Afghanistan, during the conflict.
Wood said presenting the concept to Town Council would depend on the outcome of his presentation to Rotary.
At the meeting, the Rotary voted in favour of supporting the project in spirit.
“It will stand behind the project as an organization and assist it,” said Rotarian Sheldon Fingler on behalf of the club’s president.