Veterans Park will overlook Volunteer Cemetery

By Mike Steely

Senior Writer

Legacy Parks is moving ahead with a park to remember East Tennessee military veterans on a bluff overlooking the East Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery.

The East Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery averages three burial services each day and hosts other events. Legacy Parks feels the park site is ideal for reflection, commemorations and celebrations. Within the park will be a pavilion and a viewing area overlooking the veterans cemetery.

The future parkland was donated in 2018 by Blue Water Industries as a gathering place for up to 250 people.

The new park will feature overlooks of the cemetery and French Broad River, a one-eighth-mile memorial walk, a reflective garden, a natural surface nature trail looping through the woods and a memorial wall to honor individual veterans. The parking lot planned will hold 60 cars and the park will be ADA accessible.

Veteran organizations and the East Tennessee Community Design Center are creating the design of the future park. Once it is built, the site will be donated by Legacy Parks to become a Knox County public park.

“We just kicked off a mini-campaign to raise the rest of the funds needed for the final construction costs,” said Sarah Rump, Legacy Parks marketing manager.

“We are almost ready to break ground and the timeline is still on track for opening this fall,” she told The Focus.

Donations are being sought by Legacy Parks to fund enhancements to the park design and create a maintenance fund. You can find Legacy Parks Foundation on the internet or mail a donation for the park to Legacy Parks, 900 Volunteer Landing Ln, Knoxville, TN 37915 or call the foundation at (865) 525-2585.

So far, donations have come from Knox County, the Captain Bill Robinson Chapter of Vietnam Veterans of America, the AMVETS of Tennessee, the state of Tennessee, and various veterans groups.