New park, lasting memories in Albertville

Kim Weishar, Jessica’s father and Tate Mills, Albertville Fire Dept Fire Chief cut the ribbon for the Albertville Memorial Park. The new park began as a tribute to Jessica, who died in a tragic bus at I-94 in Albertville crash five years ago. (Sun staff photo by Samara Postuma)

Kim Weishar, Jessica’s father and Tate Mills, Albertville Fire Dept Fire Chief cut the ribbon for the Albertville Memorial Park. The new park began as a tribute to Jessica, who died in a tragic bus at I-94 in Albertville crash five years ago. (Sun staff photo by Samara Postuma)

The Weishar family gathers at the new Albertville Memorial Park dedicated to Jessica Weishar, who died in a bus crash near the site. (Sun staff photo by Samara Postuma)

The Weishar family gathers at the new Albertville Memorial Park dedicated to Jessica Weishar, who died in a bus crash near the site. (Sun staff photo by Samara Postuma)

by Samara Postuma

Contributing writer

 

The Albertville Memorial Park that was finished earlier this fall was dedicated Sunday afternoon.

The project began as a tribute to a tragic bus accident that occurred in April 2008 when a bus full of Pelican Rapids band students overturned. Many students were injured and one life, Jessica Lynn Weishar, was lost.

The park is a collaboration between the city of Albertville, the Albertville fire department, Pelican Rapids and the friends and family of Weishar.

Tate Mills, the Albertville Fire Department Fire Chief, was emotional as he thanked various people and organizations involved in the memorial. Albertville City Council Member, Larry Sorensen also took time to thank those gathered, “Without a vision, none of this would have been possible,” he said, noting that it took dedication and vision to get the memorial created and in place.

Weishar’s family and many others from Pelican Rapids were at the ribbon cutting ceremony as well as Albertville fire fighters.

The memorial park and garden is located north of I-94 and south of Hunter’s Lake at the intersection of 62nd Street NE and 63rd Street NE. The project was made possible through private donations, generous volunteers, the Albertville Fire Department, the community of Pelican Rapids and local Eagle Scout, Nolan Anderson.

Anderson, a St. Michael-Albertville High School sophomore coordinated and laid out the pavers as part of his Eagle Scout project. He was also in attendance at Sunday’s ribbon cutting and ceremony.

The memorial park is for anyone and all are welcome to use the space to memorialize loved ones who have been lost on I-94 and other local roads. The garden is maintenance free and aside from some additional plantings that will be planted next year, will require little to no maintenance.

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