Veterans volunteer to maintain memorial grounds in Hawaii during government shutdown
Kirk Matthews, KHON
9:14 AM, Oct 15, 2013
11:56 AM, Oct 15, 2013
HAWAII - The government shutdown has left a number of Hawaii monuments and memorials without any type of regular upkeep for two weeks.
A group of military members and their families decided to change that.
Fifty members of all branches of the military and their families came to the Arizona memorial Monday morning to take care of the grounds. Thank social media for that.
"...saw the word on facebook and I thought what better way to support those who got this country where we are. And since no one was taking care of it, I figured why not help with everybody else," one veteran said.
At one point, police were called to the scene.
The volunteers were suspected of trespassing.
After a brief conversation, it was understood why the volunteers were at the Arizona.
"Pride, really. We hate to see our land - this is everyone's right to be here - and it's nice to have it be the way it should be in order to have it honor the ones who this land honors," the volunteer said.
Visitors who planned to come to the memorial were disappointed - but appreciated the work of the volunteers.
"I think it's marvelous. It shows respect for what has happened in the past and how they feel about the place so we're very impressed," a visitor said.
Tourism and the military are the two biggest industries in the state.
Governor Neil Abercrombie is anxious for Congress to reach an agreement on the federal budget to get the state back on track.