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'Take the Oath' committee gives back to Sanpete entities

by Marcy Curtis Original Staff Writer — Sanpete Messenger Reposted by Take the Oath Memorial

Members of the Take the Oath Extreme Bulls Committee deliver a check to the Manti American Legion post for $10,000 to go towards a memorial to honor all who have taken the oath to serve their country. Pictured are: (L-R) Daryl Cluff, Art Woodbury, Glen Rink, Carl Neilson, Steve Lund, Bruce Ericksen, Jon Larson, John Cox, Cliff Moses.

MANTI—Take the Oath, a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting individuals and families who have taken an oath to support their country, has partnered with local legislators and sponsors to raise money for a memorial statue in Manti.

The monument is currently in the design stage. Plans are to place it south of the Sanpete County Fairgrounds along US-89.

Utah Rep. Steve Lund, who spearheaded the project, said when he was a new county com- missioner, a good friend of his, Woody Woodside, asked him why Manti didn’t have a memo- rial for veterans. That got Lund pushing for ideas on how the county could raise money to put a memorial up.

“I spent a lot of time talking with the American Legion, and I decided to turn the idea over to them and see where they could take it,” Lund said. Members of the Legion came back to Lund and said they want- ed something more then just a memorial in Manti for veterans. They wanted it to be something for all Sanpete County residence that have taken the oath. This includes active military members, veterans, firefighters, city council members, police officers and EMTs, among others.

In September of 2021, Lund was sitting on a fence at a rodeo in St. George with his good friend Jon Larson, and they got talking about bulls and rodeos and how to honor those individuals who are willing to commit to serve.

Sanpete County Commissioners accept a check from the Take the Oath committee for $3,500 to be used on improvements at the fairgrounds. Pictured are: (L-R) Reed Hatch, Edwin Sunderland, Carl Nielson, Scott Bartholomew, Steve Lund, Jon Larson.

By December 2021, a board of The Take the Oath Memorial and Extreme Bulls was organized. Bar T Rodeo in Chester reached out to their PRCA and Cowboy Channel contacts. Memorial Day was set for the event and the board began looking for sponsors and supporters.

“The response was greater than expected from the PRCA, Cowboy Channel, Farm Bureau’s Miracle of Agriculture non-profit, Maverik, CO Building Systems and many local businesses,” Lund said.

He said the board worried about putting too much burden on local businesses with the San- pete County Fair coming in the fall. They told businesses they did not want to take away from their support of the fair and made sure it would not affect their funding. When the Federal Delega- tions from Utah got wind of the event, Congressmen Burgess Owens and Chris Stewart provid- ed flags for the two students from North Sanpete and South Sanpete School Districts, who would take the oath to join the Marines and Army. General Jefferson Burton administered the oath to the new soldiers, who are now at Boot Camp and Basic Training.

“We are grateful for all of our service men and women,” Lund said. “They and the first responders are the impetus for the Take the Oath Memorial Monument.” The Take the Oath event raised around $30,000 and the board was able to give back to several programs throughout the county, Lund said.

Members of the Take the Oath Extreme Bulls Committee presented a check to the Sanpete County Search and Rescue for $3,500. Pictured are (L-R): Neil Johnson, Carl Nielson, Steve Herbert, Bo Lund, Steve Lund, Jon Larson, Kerry Nielson, Jared Buchanan.

Over the past few weeks, The Take the Oath Board has been able to deliver $3,500 to Sanpete County to be used on the fairgrounds, $3,500 to Sanpete County Search and Rescue, $10,000 to the American Legion Posts in Sanpete County for their memorial and $1,500 to be divided equally between the three high schools in Sanpete County for FFA Scholarships.

“The Take the Oath Memorial and Extreme Bulls board are overwhelmed with gratitude to all of Utah and the Rodeo Community for their strong support,” Lund said. The board invites all to attend and participate in the 2023 Take the Oath Memorial and Extreme Bulls event on Memorial Day 2023.

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