The Earthen Dove Effigy Mound is a “living memorial” which pays tribute to POWs and MIAs. Because there are many among us who, while home in body, are missing emotionally or in spirit. At The Highground, MIA also stands for “Missing in America”.
This “living memorial” is a replica of a Native American effigy mound. It was designed by David Giffey and constructed by volunteers from throughout Wisconsin. It contains soil from all 72 counties as well as hundreds of locations throughout the United States. Located southwest of the point of the plaza, The Dove measures 100′ head to tail; the wing span is 140′.
At the 1989 dedication ceremony, Vietnam veteran and Native American, John Beaudin (Wa Kanja Hoohega), explained the symbolic purpose of the mound: “It is a spiritual place where you can go and let your mother, the Earth, hold you. Let the children play on it. Dance on it. Use it to unload your grief and pain, to renew and strengthen you. Lay back in the soft fold of its wings and let Mother Earth unburden you. Then get up and leave your troubles and cares there on the mound, as you walk, away, renewed and refreshed.”
John’s words have been memorialized in the spring of 2003 with a plaque inset into a 6600 lb red granite stone.
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