Merchant Marine Memorial Park opens at MEBA school

A 10-acre memorial park honoring merchant mariners has opened on the campus of the Calhoon Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association Engineering School in Easton, Md.

The Park was designed to resemble a ship at sea, with a propeller at the ster and a bell at the bow.
   Image Credit: Courtesy Calhoon MEBA Engineering School

Dedicated on Oct. 19, the Merchant Marine Memorial Park pays tribute to mariners who died in the line of duty.

The focal point of the park is a raised area in the shape of a 600-foot merchant ship. The bow is made of concrete and raised from the surrounding area. Two 5-ton anchors are attached. The anchors are from a United States Lines merchant ship. A ship’s bell adorns the memorial aft of the bow. The bell, from the merchant ship African Sun, is on loan from the U.S. Maritime Administration. A six-bladed propeller is set at the stern of the ship memorial. The 22-foot-diameter bronze propeller was donated by Wärtsilä Lips. The company installed and refinished the surfaces of the blades.

A tall grass called silky wild rye will be planted around the outline of the ship to simulate water and waves as the wind blows through the grass. Located behind the stern is a lake with fountains, adding to the peaceful atmosphere.

Image Credit: Larry Pearson

The bell from the merchant ship African Sun is on loan from the U.S. Maritime Association

Brick pavers with the names of mariners have been set in the central area of the ship’s outline. Family and friends wishing to honor the memory of a mariner by having his or her name included on one of the pavers made donations to the MEBA Merchant Marine Memorial Foundation.

“The park will always be open to the public, and we are planning several maritime-related events at the park,” said Anne Thurner, the school’s spokeswoman.

The Calhoon School is dedicated to training MEBA members. Established in 1875, MEBA is the oldest maritime union in the United States and represents 4,000 engineering and deck officers.

By Professional Mariner Staff