The Veteran Memorial at Grandview Town Park now features a 10,100-pound Howitzer, a silent sentinel standing at attention on its freshly laid concrete foundation. The Schneider 155-mm Howitzer was based on French Army design from World War I. An altered version was put into American production in 1918, and such pieces saw extensive service during the Second World War. Valued for its ability to project both direct and indirect fire, Grandview’s newest monument likely launched its last shell in anger during that conflict. In its heyday, this Howitzer had an effective range of around 12,500 yards. It has since been decommissioned via concrete added to its barrel, adding roughly a thousand pounds to the weight of the piece.
The Howitzer was a passion project of local veteran Frank Ritchie, who kickstarted the war memorial. The town and Ritchie successfully procured this piece in early May, waiting only for a solid foundation to be set before parking it at its new post in the town park.
Photo by Don Steen