Little Elm’s Public Safety Honor Park
LITTLE ELM, TX – A community park honoring first responders is coming to the municipal complex in Little Elm, and residents, organizations, businesses and corporations can assist in financing its construction. The living memorial, called the Public Safety Honor Park, is to be located on a patch of open space facing the Little Elm Town Hall and Public Library. It will contain structures that pay homage to police and fire personnel as well as to the late Detective Jerry Walker who was killed while responding to a disturbance in Little Elm on Jan. 17, 2017. The designated site of the contemplative garden is at 102 West Eldorado Parkway, across the entry driveway from Little Elm’s Public Safety Building and serves as a welcoming feature to visitors of Town Hall and the Library. The park’s overall thematic design was conceived by a citizens committee with the final technical design under the auspices of Halff and Associates.
Parks design firm Dunaway Associates helped create the initial design. Using the concept of a small flock of sheep being tended to and guarded by a trained sheepdog, ever-faithful to its task of providing safety and comfort to the sheep, the memorial calls to mind the selfless actions of the unseen caretaker, ever ready to protect, defend and save the lives of those in its care. Attributed to author and retired US Army Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, the sheepdog analogy is one which Walker, himself an Army veteran, espoused and adopted as the basis for his call to police work. The memorial will include benches, pergolas, a water feature, landscaping, various species of trees, walkways, contemplative paths, and a large open area available for gatherings and remembrance celebrations. While the construction costs are estimated to be as much as $700,000 range, a fund-raising effort has been initiated.
Donors can obtain more information at www.lehonorpark.com. Tax-deductible donations are being accepted at any level. Also, three sizes of bricks are available for sponsorship. Standard-sized bricks of 4 inches by 8 inches can be purchased for $100. Larger bricks of 8 square inches can be purchased for $300, or the largest bricks of 12 square inches can be purchased for $500. A brief message or other dedication can be added to the bricks. Both of the larger sized bricks can carry a longer message or can be decorated with one of 25 different military, patriotic or religious emblems. In addition, corporations or large donors can choose a sponsorship level from Corporal to Sergeant, Lieutenant, Captain, or Chief. These sponsorships start at $1,000 and rise incrementally to $50,000 and above. Construction of the park is expected to begin later this year.