Local Union Volunteers Help Restore Wellstone Memorial

EVELETH, Minn. — Almost 20 years after the plane crash that killed Paul and Sheila Wellstone, their son David, and local volunteers came out to restore portions of the memorial and paid their respects.

On October 25th, 2002, the plane that Paul, Sheila, their daughter, and three staff members were on crashed just before reaching the Eveleth airport.

The memorial site was established soon after, and all these years later, volunteers are still coming together to honor the Wellstone’s.

“That’s the emotional part for me is how strong those bonds are and how much people that love for my folks is still there, that’s huge for us, as a family,” David Wellstone, said.

For those doing this work, it’s very rewarding to help restore the site.

“It is a great honor to be involved that we got to come out and volunteer and come out here and work on this project,” Aaron Wright, a Business Representative for the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters, said.

Because Wellstone left such an impact on the Northland, volunteers know these updates are also important for the many site visitors.

“So it means a lot to the people in the area that its getting updated and that seeing people still enjoy it and people still come out to see this as well,” Wright, said.

David Wellstone, Paul and Sheila’s son, announced the establishment of a special fund that will help keep the site updated for years to come.

“We’re setting up a fund so that about every 18 years as they start to fade out, we’ll get them replaced, so this is going to go on for future generations to remember what both Paul and Sheila Wellstone stood for,” David Wellstone said.

Members and leaders from the Iron Range building trades came out Friday morning to provide some landscaping to the site, and replaced all ten of the placards as well.

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