LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - A Lawton Girl Scout has plans for bringing a very special addition to Elmer Thomas Park- A monument honoring seven people who died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks, all with Oklahoma ties and one of them from Lawton.
Teresa Leday-Mauney’s vision is to have two pillars, one with an engraving of the Oklahoma flag and the other with an engraving of the American Flag. In the center, there will be a granite pentagon with the seven names. The monument will be surrounded by seven Crepe Myrtle trees, one for each victim, all on a pentagon-shaped pad.
“I just want to make sure I leave something behind for my community, for my parents, and also for these victims and their families, just to know that they’re not forgotten at all, and then, of course, to have it this close to home for them and also other people here in Oklahoma,” said Teresa Leday-Mauney.
This will be Teresa’s Gold Award project- the highest award a Girl Scout can receive. It will also be her final one, as she will be starting college in the fall.
“Really, it’d just be a privilege for me to even accomplish this and just to give it back to my community as well,” said Teresa Leday-Mauney. “Also, to show to younger Girl Scouts just in our community that your dreams are possible, you just have to go out there and do it.”
Teresa said she was also inspired to do this project because of her mother, who served 26 years in the Army.
“She decided on the 9/11 project," said Merline Leday-Mauney, Teresa’s mother. "It made me aware that she pays attention to her surroundings... Being in a veterans community, being around me, a lot of military, the work I do, as well as working with veterans. So, I feel that Teresa has a big heart and it’s going to show in her project.”
Teresa is raising money for this project that will cost around $16,000. LETA has already offered to pay for half of it.
“We’re aiming at about $16,000 just for the granite, the concrete, and landscaping to get everything done with labor and everything," said Teresa Leday-Mauney. "So, that has been a true blessing for them to offer that to me.”
If you would like to help Teresa bring her 9/11 memorial to Elmer Thomas Park, you can donate online on the Girls Scouts of Western Oklahoma’s website at gswestok.org on the donation tab.
Once Teresa gathers the funding for the 9/11 memorial, she will present it to the Lawton City Council for approval.