VINELAND — A deteriorating monument of a slain president is being targeted for repair, and some of the children of the people who helped build it may be called on for help.

The work will involve restoration of the John F. Kennedy monument at Landis Park, the creation of which was made possible through the work of some local Hispanic leaders.

Parts of the monument — particularly Kennedy’s nose — are crumbling.

“This monument has been neglected for many years,” City Council President Anthony Fanucci said. “We cannot allow this monument to stay in disrepair. It is part of our city’s history that must be preserved.”

The monument, which was dedicated Sept. 24, 1966, was financed with funds raised by members of the local Hispanic community, Fanucci said. Those residents held fundraisers and visited local businesses to raise the money, he said. Its exact cost was not available.

Fanucci said he wants to form a committee of residents, possibly including some of the Hispanic leaders who helped bring it about, to work on the restoration. That committee would raise the money needed for the work, he said.

City Councilwoman Maritza Gonzalez said she believes some of their children are still in the area. Fanucci said he did not know if some of the leaders, whose names are listed on a plaque attached to the monument, are still alive.

The decision to restore the Kennedy monument could be first of several upgrades to local landmarks.

“I have been touring the city, and I have noticed that there are certain public areas that have been sadly neglected,” Fanucci said. “I am compiling a list, and I will contact the proper departments to ensure that our residents live in a beautiful, safe and clean city.”

Anyone wishing to serve on the monument committee may call Fanucci at 856-692-1514 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Contact Thomas Barlas:

609-226-9197

Been working with the Press for about 27 years.