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Roanoke’s Lee Monument will be moved to Evergreen Burial Park

Burial Park submitted the only proposal to the city manager’s office

Robert E. Lee Statue will move to Evergreen Burial Park
Robert E. Lee Statue will move to Evergreen Burial Park

ROANOKE, Va. – Roanoke’s monument to Robert E. Lee is getting a new home.

On Monday, the Roanoke City Council decided to accept the proposal submitted by Evergreen Burial Park, which would move the obelisk there.

“We did it accurately and so I think this should bring closure and closure in a way that people can live with it,” Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea said.

The proposal was signed by the president of Evergreen Development Co., Inc, Donald Wilson, and the president of the Historial Society of Western Virginia, F. Anderson Stone.

Currently, the obelisk is in storage, after it was toppled in July.

Lee monument down on ground

The park is requesting that the city also move the base and pedestal from Lee Plaza to the park.

“We think Evergreen Burial Park is a logical place for the Lee Monument, we have 60 Confederate veterans at Evergreen, we have a Union soldier buried at Evergreen," Wilson said.

City council has wanted to remove the memorial since the 2017 Charlottesville Riots, but it was only this year the new state law gave them the right to do so.

“A lot of these monuments are being removed around the country never to be seen again and I think for those who want to be able to see the monument this is a good resolution for all of us," Councilman Bill Bestpitch said.

The memorial will be adjacent to the flagpole dedicated to the Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster, on the East end of the park.

Wilson said hiding it away from the public would go against what he and his company stand for, and the cemetery is open to everyone.

“We believe the Lee monument has a story of its own to tell, how it came to be, how it came to be removed, and how it came to come to Evergreen now," Wilson said.

Council is still expected to rename Lee Plaza where the monument stood as well.

About the Authors:

Shayne Dwyer is an award-winning journalist and a member of the 10 News team since May 2018.

Lindsey joined the WSLS 10 team as a reporter in February 2019 and is thrilled to call Roanoke her new home!