NEW YORK -- Plans for the nation's first memorial for Korean War veterans got a major boost Tuesday from the New York Stock Exchange, which donated $50,000 toward a design competition for the monument.
The donation was the largest corporate contribution so far in the $2 million fund drive launched by the New York Korean Veterans Memorial Commission, which intends to erect the monument next year in Battery Park, across the bay from the Statue of Liberty.
Monuments across the nation honor veterans of the Revolutionary War, Civil War, World Wars I and II and Vietnam War but there is no memorial for Korean War Vets, said commission member Paschal McGuinness.
Some 53,000 Americans were killed and another 103,000 wounded in the war from 1950 to 1953.
'We have many people who served in that war and it is time a memorial was built,' McGuinness said.
It is also high time for a ticker-tape parade for the war heroes, said Mayor Edward Koch, who said he will allow the commission to pick a date for the procession.
The commission said the $50,000 donation from the New York Stock Exchange would help fund a design competition this summer in cooperation with the city Department of Cultural Affairs. A pool of artists will be asked to submit design proposals. Five finalists will be given a stipend to prepare models.
A likely theme of the monument will be 'the idea of international cooperation among nations,' said commission member Thomas Evans.
Part of the donation also will pay for a public service advertising campaign to spread the word about the monument. The ads, which focus on the Korean conflict as 'The Forgotten War,' will be completed by Memorial Day.
Other donations received by the commission include $10,000 from the Consolidated Edison Company for use in events including a ceremony on July 27 to mark the 35th anniversary of the signing of a truce that ended the fighting in the Korean War.