(09/02/13) - A new monument was unveiled Monday morning at the Sitdowners
Memorial in Flint.
The Sitdowners Memorial is 10 years old, and there's a new addition.
The site is becoming known for more than just a location that recognizes the Sitdowners.
Region 1-C director Norwood Jewell honored the surviving members of the Original Sitdowners and the Women's Emergency Brigade for their actions that gave rise to the modern labor movement.
"They had the fortitude to sit down, the fortitude to grab arms and be a human blockade in the case of the women's brigade and do things I don't think any of us could do today," said Norwood Jewell, UAW Region 1-C director.
"This is my place to be. I always come here on Labor Day and the activities. I enjoy it," said Richard Wiecorck, original Sitdowner.
The crowd moved to the southeast corner of the park, where some objects lay covered by camouflage material. Former Region 1-C directors removed the coverings to reveal a monument to the Armed Forces, a battlefield cross and a granite bench.
"A tremendous idea. Every year we try to come up with something new, but I think this is fantastic," said Cal Rapson, former Region 1-C director.
"Our veterans give so much and ask for so little in return that it's important that we take a moment to honor them as well. There's such a strong relationship between organized labor and our veterans," said U.S, Representative Dan Kildee, (D) 5th District.
UAW leadership said when they talked about adding additional monuments to the Sitdowners Memorial, paying tribute to the military was an easy decision.
"We owe everything to our veterans and thought it was more than fitting to put it here in Sitdowners Memorial Park," Jewell said.
The Sitdowners Park is open all year long and is located behind the Region 1-C offices on Atherton Road near Van Slyke.
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