Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial
Celebrating 70 years of Commitment to Veterans and their Families
Ever since its dedication in April 1954, the Mt. Soledad Memorial Association has been committed to preserving the memory of the service and sacrifice of our veterans. With the unwavering support of our members, donors and the community, the Memorial was able to undergo significant expansion and improvements throughout 2023:
• The Wall Extension Project was completed, extending five new walls, creating the space to hold an additional 2,000 plaques.
• The landscaping surrounding the memorial was enhanced and the addition of four new rose beds was created thanks to the Village Garden Club of La Jolla.
• In 2023 the memorial welcomed over 300,000 visitors to the Memorial – twice as many as last year – all free of charge!
Although the memorial has experienced considerable growth, the Association requires continued support to fulfill its mission for the next 70 years and beyond. Executive Director, Neil O’Connell notes that through the steadfast commitment and the creative energy of his team, the memorial stands proud of having made a tremendous impact across the entire community. “It is understandable why the number of visitors to the memorial has steadily increased. We continue to work hard to tell our story. Being the only memorial in the country, sitting atop one of the Californias’ most scenic panoramic views, right here in San Diego, we have over 7,500 granite plaques honoring both living and deceased servicemembers, each with a story of their service and sacrifice. Our memorial creates a captivating and unique experience.”
In 2024, the Association is focusing on four key areas of impact:
1. Education: The Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial is a valuable educational resource that conveys the significant military and veteran history of our region. And shares the stories of over 7,700 veterans on the granite honor walls.
2. Innovation: To complement the visitor experience, a combination of unique mobile technologies will enhance the experience of visitors. This includes interactive mapping to provide guided tours of veteran plaques, while telling their unique stories.
3. Capacity: We are a small team with a great deal of experience, we recognize that we can have an even greater impact with adequate resources.
4. Preservation: The Association is committed to ensuring that the entire property with its beautiful granite memorial walls, its gentle walkways and cross are kept in pristine condition. The memorial is always accessible for everyone who comes to honor our veterans.
“As the memorial closes out this chapter of gratitude in 2023, we begin 2024, expressing heartfelt thanks to all for being an integral part of the Mt. Soledad National Veterans Memorial family. Your support serves as a testament to the enduring spirit of unity and respect for those who have defended the principles we hold dear. Together, we ensure that their legacy is still a source of inspiration for us all,” Neil O’Connell shared with GB Magazine.
The memorial is open daily from 7 AM to 9 PM and is at 6905 La Jolla Scenic Drive South in La Jolla.