Services at monuments halted by government shutdown

WASHINGTON — While the outdoor memorials are open to visitors during the shutdown, other monuments and services may not be available.

Visitors may notice portable toilets lined up outside the memorials. That’s because staff is furloughed.

“Restrooms will be locked, park rangers won’t be there to do programs or provide information,” said Mike Litterst with the National Park Service.

While the Lincoln Memorial and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial are among the monuments still open, other historic buildings will be closed all together.

“Ford’s Theatre and the Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality National Monument,
those areas will be closed,” said Litterst.

An organization honoring fallen soldiers visited the World War II Memorial to lay wreaths as the government shutdown continued.

Ronald Greenwood is a member of the nonprofit, Hot Rods for Heroes Incorporated. Their mission is to honor fallen soldiers at the request of families who aren’t able to be here for the holidays. “We pay our respects by laying the wreaths over at the various monuments,” said Greenwood.

Greenwood, a veteran himself, finds the impact of the shutdown disappointing.

“This is America, how is this happening? It puts a bad taste in your mouth.” Greenwood said.

But for Laura Fertitta and other members of the organization, the shutdown won’t stop them from honoring our fallen men and women.

“We still have to do what we need to do in our hearts so we have to just get around it,” said Fertitta.

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