****9/24/19 UPDATE - Our Volunteer Board has suggested that we raise our GoFundMe goal slightly to raise some additional funds for long term maintenance of this beautiful Monument that will be enjoyed for many more generations. There will never be a charge for anyone visiting this Monument.****
****9/14/19 UPDATE - As of yesterday, we have mailed a commemorative Lynyrd Skynyrd Monument guitar pick to each GoFundMe contributor who has responded to my email requesting your name and mailing address (GoFundMe does not provide us with mailing addresses for security reasons). If you have not responded to my email asking for your name and mailing address, please do so now. Thanks to everyone who has contributed! Miles Patrick Nelson. Mnelson99@aol.com****
****IMPORTANT UPDATE **** EVERYONE WHO MAKES A DONATION OF
$15 OR MORE WILL RECEIVE BY MAIL A COMMEMORATIVE LYNYRD SKYNYRD BAND GUITAR PICK COMMISSIONED FOR THIS PROJECT PRIOR TO THE OCTOBER 20,2019 UNVEILING OF THE PERMANENT HISTORICAL MARKER. (WE WILL BE IN TOUCH WITH EVERYONE WHO HAS ALREADY MADE A DONATION TO GET YOUR MAILING ADDRESS.). A SPECIAL THANKS TO SCOTT SMITH AND TO FLASHMUSICUSA.COM FOR THIS UNIQUELY DESIGNED COMMEMORATIVE COLLECTOR'S ITEM.
History starts with the people who lived it. Without their experience - the experience of both the victims and the survivors - and an effort to capture those events, history doesn't exist. Help us memorialize an important historical moment.
0n October20, 1977, a plane crashed in the woods of southwest Mississippi, but it wasn't just any plane. It was carrying the band Lynyrd Skynyrd, and the calamity claimed the life of the charismatic lead singer, Ronnie Van Zant, as well as the lives of guitarist Steve Gaines, back-up singer Cassie Gaines, assistant band manager Dean Kilpatrick, and both pilot and co-pilot.
Up to that point the group had been the high-flying, free-wheeling kings of southern rock, but their songs touched on the universal themes of nonconformity, freedom, love, loyalty, and loss - themes brought to life by Van Zant's rootsy vocals and the band's musical hooks. Skynyrd's music transcended the American south. Then and now.
People have come from all over the world to pay tribute at the wooded site where the Skynyrd plane fell from the sky, but history needs to be clear about this place. Help us create a lasting memorial to be situated near the crash site. This historical Monument (see the artist’s rendition at the top of the GFM page) will include photographs and a narrative of the accident, the heroics of rescuers and medical personnel who helped prevent additional loss of life, and the lasting legacy of the band.
Project costs are as follows: $10,000 for the crash site Monument (because of several large generous donations made in addition to the GoFundMe Page donations, the size and scope of the Monument is now several times the original planned cost - see the beautiful updated photo at the top of this page), $10,000 for an additional marker on the campus of the hospital where the survivors were taken, to recognize the caregivers; and remaining proceeds for a contingency fund to be used for directional marking along the roads leading to the location of the crash site marker, and other related long term expenses.
All those who donate will be invited to the dedication ceremony for this historical marker, to be held on October 20, 2019.