I was riding my bike through City Park when I noticed what appears to be a gravestone on Henry Thomas Drive between the sculpture and botanical gardens. The stone memorializes two men killed in France during World War I. What is the story behind this? Is this their final resting place?
Lots of resting goes on in City Park, but it's not the final resting place of anyone, not legally anyway. On Victory Drive in front of the entrance to the Pavilion of the Two Sisters at the New Orleans Botanical Garden, however, there are three small stone and brass markers. Each was placed there in memory of young soldiers — Walter and Wallace Cox, Thomas A. Gragard and Donald Bradburn — who were killed in action in 1918, the last year of World War I.
There is another monument to World War I veterans, this one located on City Park Avenue near the McDonogh Oak. At the top the the tall obelisk-like structure are insignias of the four branches of the military. On one side are the words "In memory of our comrades who made the supreme sacrifice." The other side bears the inscription "To you from failing hands we throw the torch; be yours to hold it high!"