Panels to return to Guam memorial
HAGATNA, Guam (AP) - Following several months of delays, the project to install new memorial panels at the Asan Bay Overlook is scheduled to begin Sept. 27, according to the National Park Service.
Much of the overlook, which is one of several War in the Pacific National Historical Park units on island, will be closed through October because of the construction, according to the Park Service. The memorial wall, sidewalks, view sheds, pavilion and half of the parking lot will be closed.
Originally completed in 1994, the memorial wall was damaged by theft in 2007, when 34 of the 90 bronze panels were stolen. Joseph Elibosang was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison for the theft.
He sold the panels, worth about $58,000, to a scrap yard for $1,584, according to Pacific Daily News files.
Even before the theft, the Park Service was considering replacing the bronze and acrylic panels, which were faded because of the elements, with a more durable material.
Workers will install 103 new black-granite panels, inscribed with 17,771 names of those who died or suffered during the occupation and liberation of Guam during World War II.
The new panels were supposed to be installed and unveiled in time for Liberation Day, in July, but the project was delayed because the panels contained errors and were not fit to be installed, said park ranger Dan Brown.
The contractor re-etched the panels, he said.
The renovation will add 1,629 names to the wall.