Alamo Cenotaph Stays!!
by Sonja Harris on September 30, 2020 at 11:29 AM
“From the fire that burned their bodies, rose the eternal spirit of sublime heroic sacrifice, gave birth to an empire state.”
In a stunning upset the Texas Historical Commission voted on Tuesday, September 22, 2020 in favor of the Alamo Cenotaph to keep the memorial in place in a 9-10 hour zoom marathon. To their credit the vote 12-2 with one abstaining was the right thing to do. THC Chairman John Nau said, “The Commission recognizes the significance of this decision and the importance of the Alamo Master Plan to the future of our state’s most important historic site. The 15 member commission voted on this issue based on their individual determinations of what was in the best interest of Texas.”
The online poll was 29,000 for not moving the cenotaph to a meager 1,000 in favor of moving it. A testament to the everyday Patriot’s unity. The Heroes at the Alamo died for Liberty and as the inscription on the Spirit of Sacrifice states, “gave birth to an empire state.”
The tension had been building up for months with feelings that the probable outcome would be that the cenotaph would be relocated 500 feet south of its original place, in front of the historic Menger Hotel. But this time, the THC heard the cry of the people. Roberto Trevino, San Antonio District 1 councilman, was the instigator and was shocked to say the least. In an interview on News4SanAntonio he said, “That the move was crucial to the whole plan in order to open up the site and restore the mission compound.” Trevino and Mayor Ron Nirenberg both admitted that they were now going to have a difficult task moving forward and were planning to meet and see what can be done at this point with the ‘reimagine the Alamo plan’. A virtual meeting is planned for Wednesday according to Sharon Skrobarcek, treasurer general of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas to see how to proceed.
Trevino did have a response to the ruling on Facebook.
I am disappointed with the decision today of the THC to deny the City’s permit application for the relocation and preservation of the Cenotaph. The denial puts the project in a state of limbo and the City must now review its legal strategy and its fiduciary responsibility in order to determine its course of action.
I appreciate the hard work of the members of the Alamo Citizens Advisory Committee, my fellow Tri-Chairs, past and present members of the Alamo Management Committee, the General Land Office, and City of San Antonio staff over the past six years.
This project has been a labor of love and regardless of today’s vote, the hard work to preserve and protect the Alamo will not cease. The adherence to the adopted Vision and Guiding Principles will continue to be the driving force of this project as other options are considered.
George P. Bush, the General Land Commissioner, has remained silent about the ruling…checked his Tweeter feed…nothing, checked his Facebook page…nothing. What’s up with that? Silence is usually a telltale sign that something is going on, being planned. Maybe it’s just my suspicious nature about the San Antonio City Council and Bush getting together that causes me to suspect that this is not the end.
Since I have been writing my articles on the Alamo Cenotaph, I have been fortunate to meet many people who are passionate about keeping the cenotaph in place. One such person is Lee Spencer White. She is the founder of the Alamo Defenders Descendants Association. At one of our meetings she explained to me that she was a descendant of Gordon C. Jennings who fought at the Battle of the Alamo. This knowledge inspired her to lead the attack on those who wanted to move the cenotaph. Her determination and tenacity brought victory to all of Texas. It truly was a team effort. The citizenry united and accomplished a feat that could have very easily gone astray and the heroes’ memorial lost.
I spoke to White after THC denied the request to move the cenotaph and she told me that, “This has restored my faith in America, people can still turn the tide, and we can still win.” She continued to tell me that, “A small amount of people with a limited budget went against $450M and won. My spirit has been renewed.”
Not being an egotistical person, she humbly acknowledged all those who helped with the victory. I took her list from Facebook since I believe she is probably the best one to know who was involved in this tremendous undertaking. I would be amiss if I did not add the name of Bill Harris to the list as well as some friends that I know testified to keep the cenotaph in place, Patrick Von Dohlen and Ken Mercer or attended court and legislative hearings, James Dickey, and in the case of Senator Donna Campbell who co-sponsored the Alamo Cenotaph bill with Bob Hall.
A LOVE LETTER TO THE CENOTAPH ARMY- Lee Spencer White
In no particular order with additions later. Please PM me if I've forgotten anyone (I'm sure I have)
The Alamo Defenders Descendants Association are blessed so many answered the clarion call years ago at the first Alamo Protest.
Since then the troops have grown into the thousands with so many forming groups and FB pages. A huge heartfelt thank you to the 29,000 YES 29,000 people who took time out of their day to email the Texas Historical Commission to say "Save the Cenotaph" "Don't Move it ONE inch" The outpouring of patriotic Texans from all political parties and backgrounds has been awe- inspiring.
We won this battle but REMEMBER we must remain vigilant in order to win the war.
In our FOXHOLE: (if I missed you, I'll keep updating)
Our ADDA board
Pat Jackson, Raylon Schlueder his lovely wife Corinne and Jo Nell Neese. ALL our membership and friends Sheila Kimple, Tammy Holsey, Darlene Chambers Collins, Kathleen Childress Holt, Cindy Holsey Dickason,
Maggie Clopton Wright, a one woman fireball
Ray Myers, his expertise started the ball rolling
Rep. Kyle Beidermann, a true champion of the Cenotaph, he attended every gathering and meeting
Dr. Stephen Hardin
Rick Range and Save the Alamo has kept up a continual bombardment of posts, over 40 radio interviews and FB ads. He's spent time and treasure that shifted the outcome of this battle.
KR Wood Bobby Keel and their music for the soul.
Don't Move the Cenotaph ladies, they stayed on top of the situation with constant posts, memes and news. They really turned the tide. Cindy Muth Gaskill and Charisma C. Villarreal. Dr.Alma
Walter West, who lugged our HUGE Don't Move the Cenotaph sign across the state.
This is Texas Freedom Force, who stood against the angry Alamo Mob especially Brandon Burkhart.
Jerry Patterson, our true hearted intelligent supporter who's stood by us from the very beginning. God Bless you
Paul Gescheidle and his lovely wife Cheryl, together they attended every Protest Rally and event handing out push cards donated by Cindy Muth Gaskill. Well done.
We wouldn't be where we are without
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick
Rep. Steve Toth
Sen. Brandon Creighton
Sen. Bob Hall
Sen. Pete Flores
Rep. Lyle Larson
THC Chairman John Nau
All THC Commissioners who voted to keep the Cenotaph where it stands.
Our true friend Lt. Col. Allen West who stood up and fought for us.
Susan Green who stood up at the end of HDRB and yelled
"We'll see you in Court"
Our brilliant LEGAL TEAM Art Martinez de Vara and Adrian Spears
Deborah Andrle who drove a long distance to ask Col. West to join our team and has continued to go above and beyond the call of duty at every turn.
Sonja Harris and her amazing gift of reporting, a huge thank you
Perry Donop Jr. for his outstanding newspaper articles and support
Susan Dantzler who continued to fight.
Blanquita Cullum and her radio program and especially her brilliant ideas. Lady! You’re a treasure.
Leo Etienne for his constant support
Tim Anderson and the Kent descendants, our rock!
Sandy Hartman for her dedication and talent
George H Rodriquez and his popular program, thank you
John Griffing and his outstanding YOUTUBE videos
Doc Greene and his radio Raging Elephants
Raging Elephants Claver Kamau Imani radio
Denise Gutierrez Pintor JD Ramirez Andy Prior
Our friend Matt Pina
Richard Briscoe Maria Torres Rodney Seiler Whitney Masterson-Moyes, way to go girl!
Bless each and every one of you for your tireless devotion.
I love you
At a time when there is so much discord and ugliness, how grateful we should be to have won this battle with so many Patriots. Please stay vigilant, we don’t know what plans the city of San Antonio has in store for the Alamo and Alamo Cenotaph.
Now is the time to FIGHT!