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Tuesday, October 7, 2014
The new SFC Albert Jex memorial bench stands in Children's Memorial Park. (PHOTOS BY HEATHER N. GRIMMER / ENP PHOTOGRAPHER)


The bench was installed this morning near the flag pole in the park.
In the end, it was a team effort to get a new memorial bench dedicated to SPC Albert Jex at a new location in Lockport.

The new bench, donated by Orleans Monument Company, was installed this morning at Children's Memorial Park at the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and South Transit Street. And the $2,100 bench wasn't the only thing donated. Lockport firefighters donated their time to dig the hole for the bench's concrete pad. And American Concrete donated the concrete pad itself.

"The city of Lockport has angels that walk among it," was Cathy MacFarlane's explanation. Albert Jex's mother was reasonably upset when the original bench, itself donated by David Ulrich, was broken in the early morning hours of Aug. 9. But tonight, she was pleased to see the collaboration that occurred to honor her son once again.

"I'm very happy that it has a home and it's in an area that will be used," she said. "I feel like it's in a better place."

She said the previous Locust Street location had made sense. It allowed her son — in a manner of speaking — to help the weary and give their feet a break. But the new location, she said, is even better.

Children's Memorial Park is in a heavy traffic area on South Transit Street, and it's surrounded by houses. The bench was located near the flag pole, a touch MacFarlane also appreciated.

The new bench is nearly identical to the old one with one exception: The back of the bench had noted that it was donated by Ulrich. The new one does not.

All in all, MacFarlane is very pleased with the new bench and the community that made it possible.

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