Battle brewing over Alamo memorial plans

Plans to potentially move the Alamo cenotaph don't sit well with descendants of those who died in the 1836 battle.

It has stood tall across from the Alamo for decades in honor of those who died defending the Alamo. The marble cenotaph is engraved with the names of the men who died defending the mission in 1836.

It’s served as a memorial to their sacrifice, and also as a reminder to descendants of those protectors.

One name inscribed on the cenotaph belongs to the fifth great-grandfather of Gordon C. Jennings.

“It’s special, but the way I look at it, it doesn't make me special,” says Jennings. “It makes me have an obligation to protect them. They can't get up and fight anymore so we have to fight for them.”

As the president of the Alamo Defenders Descendants Association, that's exactly what Lee Spencer White is doing.

“Texas wouldn't be what it is if it were not for the Alamo defenders, and I think it’s pitiful not to honor that and leave at least one monument to them here in the plaza,” White says.

As part of the effort to preserve the Alamo battlefield, there are plans to close off traffic that runs through Alamo Plaza and change commercials shops into a museum. Plans have also been proposed to restore the cenotaph – and also possibly move it.

The city of San Antonio has yet to officially decide where or if it will be moved, but a potential relocation site could be one of the funeral pyres, where it's believed the bodies of the defenders were burned.

White believes that site would be an insult to the protectors. “That's not honoring them. Let them be honored right here where they bled and died and stood for freedom.”

Jennings agrees. “It’s going to stay here, and I'm going to tell everyone I can in the state of Texas and beyond to come to our aid to help us here because there’s not one good reason given to move it.”

© 2017 KENS-TV


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