Veterans Memorial Committee

Veterans Memorial PlazaVeterans Memorial CommitteePlaza in ConstructionVeterans Memorial Plaza DedicationDr. Mark Wenzel at Plaza DedicationVeterans Memorial Dedication CeremonyBetty Mooney at Dedication Ceremony

Veterans Memorial Plaza

From the beginning, having a space to honor the Anacortes community and service to the nation was a priority for both the district and a local group of committed veterans. The Veterans Memorial Steering Committee was formed to ensure that the Veteran’s Memorial at Anacortes High School would carry on into the future.

The committee’s mission was to create a memorial that would stand as a tribute to the patriotic and courageous men and women who served our nation and that would reflect the bravery, sacrifice and strength they gave our country. Local architect, Brooks Middleton, designed the memorial with input from the committee. 

Veterans Memorial Committee Members: 

 Eric Johnson Eric Johnson, co-chair – United States Air Force Colonel, Retired Colonel, 30 years. 
Johnson’s military career literally took him around the world: long-range combat missions in Southeast Asia piloting an HH-53 Super Jolly Green Giant helicopter; airdropping Rangers and supplies from C-141 Starlifters; and piloting the American Embassy’s Super King Air in the Arabian Gulf. Johnson held executive positions at worldwide locations ranging from the Joint Staff at the Pentagon to US embassies in Saudi Arabia and The Netherlands. He is proud to have founded the Anacortes Family Center and the Kiwanis Aktion Club.
 Matt Miller Matt Miller, co-chair – United States Navy Commander, Retired, 22 years.
After earning his B.A. in Government and Politics from University of  Maryland, Miller was commissioned via Navy ROTC at the George Washington University. After earning his wings at NAS Pensacola, his flying duties included serving as a Bombardier/Navigator and as an Electronic Counter Measures Officer.   Miller’s deployments include the Mediterranean Sea, Southwest Asia and Turkey.  Miller also served as Strike Operations Officer aboard USS Abraham Lincoln, which deployed to the Pacific. Closer to home, he served as both Operations Officer and Executive Officer at NAS Whidbey.

 Dick Iversen Richard Iversen - United States Air Force Colonel, Retired, 20 ½ years.  
Iversen was born and raised in Anacortes and is a proud Seahawk. Over the course of his career he piloted 10 U.S. military aircraft and flew over 350 combat missions during two tours in Vietnam.  He served in command positions at Squadron, Wing and Headquarters levels including Director of the $20.5B B-1B bomber development program.  Passionate about America's need to support post 9-11 returning soldiers, he had been a crew member on JEFFAIR, flying wounded soldiers and their families nationwide through the Veterans Airlift Command. Iversen passed away in September, 2017. 
 Betty Mooney  Betty Mooney – United States Marine Corps Sergeant, Retired, 3 years. 
Mooney joined the Marine Corps after high school intent on seeing the world. Ironically, after traveling to South Carolina for recruit training, she was stationed at El Toro Marine Corps Air Station in Santa Monica, CA, just 80 miles from home. Mooney’s military occupational specialty (MOS) was accounting, and she became a fiscal accountant and payroll clerk. Not long after, she met and married her husband, Pat. After completing her three years of enlistment, she was discharged in 1958.
 Chris Long Chris Long – United States Navy Lieutenant Commander, Retired, 22 years. 
Long’s first tour of duty as an aviator was with HSL-49 based out of NAS North Island, San Diego flying SH-60B helicopters. He completed two deployments on the USS Shiloh and the USS Curts. He has served as a flight instructor, operations and safety officer, aircraft commander, as well as director of the Naval Aviation Choir. Long spent his last 10 years of service at NAS Whidbey Island, where he retired in 2009 after nearly 5,000 flight hours and over 1,000 instructor hours.
 Bob Papadakis  Bob Papadakis – United States Navy Captain (O-6), Retired, 23 years. 
A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy where he earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, Papadakis’ military career includes 13 years of Naval Strike Warfare experience as an A-6 Bombardier/Navigator and command of VAQ-133 – The Wizards – an EA-6B Prowler Squadron. He completed his Naval career as the EA-6B/EA-18G Requirements Officer on the Chief of Naval Operations’ staff in the Pentagon, and has been Boeing’s Field Representative aboard NAS Whidbey Island for the past nine years.

Meeting Minutes
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