Day 3b – The Monument Walk
Connor Lisle, The Masters School, Connecticut
Today we had the opportunity to visit some of Washington D.C.’s landmarks on the mall, known collectively as the Monument Walk. To start the tour, we met at the World War II monument and were met by Mr. Mike Conley from the ABMC, who told about the emotional impact of the opening of such a monument. On opening day, hundreds of thousands of individuals flocked to pay tribute to the veterans of World War II, and be first in line to catch a glimpse of the marble outline with jets of water shooting up and offering a view of the Lincoln Memorial on one side and the Washington Monument to the other side.
Following the tour, members of our Normandy Institute presented a wreath while a trumpeter played Taps in honor of the deceased soldiers. The ceremony was quite touching, and afterwards each student was given a flower to place at the pillar constructed in honor of the student’s home state or territory.
After the World War II Memorial, the Institute continued to the Korean War Memorial, where the haunting concrete statues of soldiers and the etching in a wall illustrated the conflict and those involved. The students and their teachers continued on and saw the impressive marble structure and metal statue built in memory of one of the most famous and influential presidents, Thomas Jefferson. Across the water was the FDR Memorial, filled with rushing waterfalls and luscious gardens of trees interspersed with statues not only of FDR, but also of everyday people whose lives he influenced throughout his presidency. Tucked away between the Jefferson and Roosevelt was a small pond and benches dedicated to George Mason. The tranquility of this monument was relaxing, and offered a space separate from the bustle of the city and surrounding monuments.
To conclude, the group ate dinner at the steps of the Lincoln Monument, and we were invited to go and see the Navy band play at the Capitol Building. The concert was spectacular, and the venue left nothing to be desired. The sweet sounds drifted from the rear steps of the Capitol and flowed down into the sprawling city of Washington D.C. below, creating a scene of peacefulness.