Wednesday, August 12, 2009


VETERANS COMMISSION SPEAKS OUT AND SUBMITS ITS ONLINE PETITION TO THE CITY OF SARASOTA. will submit its online petition to the City Commission in response to the vote of the Public Arts Committee. Sarasota County Veterans Commission speaks out on Public Art Committee vote.

It's a sculpture of the famous photograph of a sailor kissing a nurse on V-J Day in New York City, 1945. The artist is J. Seward Johnson. This thing is huge! Parents were sitting children on the nurse's feet to take photos.

August 12th, 2009 - Sarasota, Florida. has announced today it will formally submit the names of over 4,000 supporters who signed the petition to keep "Unconditional Surrender" on the Sarasota bay front to Richard Clapp, the Mayor of Sarasota. The online petition was launched by a few concerned citizens who believe the voices of the people were not being considered in the discussion on whether the monument should stay on the bay front.

" was launched to allow the public to have a voice. We have seen thousands of locals and tourists visit Unconditional Surrender, and of all the attractions on the bay front it has drawn more people there each and every day. I am perplexed that the Public Arts Committee didn't consider the simple fact that it brings people to the bay front and brings business to downtown." says Jesse Biter, a local businessman.

"We are saddened by the decision of the Public Art Committee to not recommend that 'Unconditional Surrender' remain on Sarasota's Bay front, "states Dr. Richard Swier, President of the Sarasota County Veterans Commission. "We have fully addressed the issues raised by City Commissioners and staff regarding Unconditional Surrender.

Who are these Public Art Committee people, don't they know that hundreds if not thousands of WWII vets live in the Sarasota-Bradenton-St Pete Fl area ? Have they no knowledge of history and what these WWII vets did in the 1940's, see my prior post BAND OF WARNER BROTHERS AT D-DAY INVASION OF NORMANDY & STE.-MERE-EGLISE WITH THE 82nd AIRBORNE ON 6/06/44 , Robert Warner is buried in Sarasota Memorial Park.

Richard Swier said the they specifically addressed the copy rights to the monument, the long term maintenance of Unconditional Surrender and providing the City of Sarasota future control of the monument. We worked long hours with the donor, the arts community and the City staff to put together a proposal which will bring visitors to the city, help fund the arts, honor our Veterans and meet the donor's wishes.

Unfortunately, the Public Art Committee did not seem to consider the facts we presented in making today's decision. We hope the City Commission will seriously consider the great good this donation brings to the city and on September 8th reject the recommendation of this advisory committee. For the good of the city and the people I pray they vote to keep Unconditional Surrender on Sarasota's bay front".

"We ask supporters to attend the City Commission meeting on September 8, 2009 at 2:30 p.m. when they will vote on keeping Unconditional Surrender on the bay front," said Rich Swier Jr.

If you would like to send a personal email to the City Commission to show your support:

Bill Warner
private investigator
Sarasota Fl