EVANSDALE, Iowa --- Volunteers working to create Angels Memorial updated Park and Recreation Board members on their progress during a meeting Monday at Meyers Lake.
About a dozen residents attended the meeting, the majority of whom are actively involved in turning the lake's island into a lasting memorial for Lyric Cook-Morrissey and Elizabeth Collins, two young cousins who went missing in July 2012 and whose bodies were found about five months later.
Only one resident questioned the volunteers' intentions, calling the current state of the island "an eyesore."
Following a brief yelling match between the female resident, who did not identify herself, and volunteers, board member Jeff Dawson said, "If you can't be civil, I'm going to dismiss this meeting right now."
The dissenting resident left the meeting shortly afterward.
Board members seemed pleased with the progress made on the island, which included removing trunks, stumps and roots, filling ruts and ravines and removing silt from the lake, said volunteer Dona Frickson.
"I have seen remarkable movement in the last 30 to 60 days," Dawson said.
The next steps will include planting rye grass and oats along the base of the island to prevent erosion, staking off where the shelter and gazebos will be built, pouring the concrete pads they will sit on and starting the building, Frickson said.
Board members also asked that a fence be put across the walkway connecting the island with the shore to keep people away from the work site.
Offers of help and donations continue to roll in.
Heather Collins, Elizabeth's mother, said a donor has offered a large bronze fountain, with an estimated worth of $35,000, to be placed on the island.
Additionally, Curtis DeGroote, who is helping with the memorial effort, informed board members that 50 students and 15 teachers from Expo High School in Waterloo have offered to work on the island one day next month, and Frickson said Harmony House in Waterloo has a large number of perennials to donate to the project.
Pete Miles, who helped coordinated Saturday's fundraiser Concert for the Angels, was adamant in his support for the project.
"When this is all done and the people who are against it now see it, we can say 'We did this. We did this for you,'" he said. "We're doing this for Heather and Drew (Collins) and for the Morrisseys and for Lindsay (Nichols). This will be a place we can heal."
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