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Waukesha Memorial Commission decides on Grede Park as permanent memorial location

Posted at 10:26 PM, Mar 31, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-31 23:26:37-04

WAUKESHA, Wisc. — It's been nearly five months since the Waukesha Christmas Parade tragedy.

On Thursday evening, the Waukesha Christmas Parade Permanent Memorial Commission decided on Grede Park as the permanent memorial site location.

The Memorial Commission was created with the sole purpose of determining the best location to honor the lives lost and injured in the attack.

The commission is made up of city leaders, downtown businesses and those directly impacted by the tragedy.

Jennifer Andrews, Waukesha's development director, went before the commission and presented six different sites where a memorial could go.

Those locations included Spring House on the Riverwalk, Grede Park, Friedman Alley at Main Street, the intersection of Main and Gaspar, a property at Rivefront and Barstow, and lastly a green-space at Broadway and Wisconsin.

Taylor Smith is the daughter of Dancing Grannies Jane Kulich who died from her injuries. Smith was keen on Grede Park.

"Grede Park seems to have a lot of space that we could work as far as incorporating everyone’s idea," Smith stated.

"If you wanted a structure or sculpture or lights, all of that can happen in this area," Andrews said.

All committee members were in favor of Grede Park being the permanent memorial site.

While the commission is moving forward with Grede Park, members also want to see a second small memorial location.

"It would be nice to have somewhere off of Main Street to have some type of memorial there," Xtreme Dance Coach Sandy Fuller said.

Katti Pudleiner is mom to Tyler Pudleiner, who was playing saxophone in the high school band when he was hit and injured. She was in attendance and said her son would like a memorial downtown too.

"Something at Gaspar right there and that's where he was laying in the street. So that'd be a special place for him," Pudleiner said.

While Tyler's road recovery has not been an easy one, Pudleiner said she is hopeful something will be in place soon.

The memorial commission members will meet again to further discuss a specific list of requirements for potential designers and are also hoping for more community input.

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