Place Jolicoeur is still in the headlines

Mayor Fontaine called a press conference on Friday.

Mayor Leo Fontaine called a press conference on Friday, August 3, 2012 to discuss the controversy over the Place Jolicoeur memorial and new correspondence between the Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) who would like the cross atop the monument removed. The conference was held at the Woonsocket Museum of Work and Culture and was attended by Senators, State Police officials, veterans and many of the Woonsocket community.

The meeting began with a video that Mayor Fontaine produced himself. It showed the men at war and clips of the boys who lost their lives. A tear or two amongst the audience were shed.

Mayor Leo Fontaine took the podium to ensure the Town of Woonsocket that this memorial, which has stood in it's place for over 60 years, would not be moved.

Mayor Fontaine said, "The community has come together. Over 1,000 white crosses have been sold to our community members who have placed them on their front lawns for all to see how they support this memorial. It's like a gravestone to the boys who lost their lives fighting for our freedom. We will defend this memorial to the end. None of our tax payer dollars will be used in the defense of this monument."

Attorney Joseph S. Larisa, Jr. and former Mayor of East Providence reassured the audience that no tax payer dollars would be used to defend this memorial. We will continue to defend and protect their monument to honor all veterans and as a memorial to our native sons who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

Questions and answers followed. A veteran stood up, Roger Petit who fought in Korea. He let everyone know that in the Bristol, Rhode Island parade there were two floats that were facsimilies of our memorial.

In closing Mayor Fontaine said," I respect anyone's feelings, faith and beliefs. I wish that the person who filed this complaint would call me. I would tell them to speak with the Jolicouer family and to learn about the family. I think it would help change their point of view."

Place Jolicoeur was dedicated by Marshall Foch on November 13, 1921 in memory of William Jolicoeur a World War I Hero. Then on May 30, 1952 the memorial was dedicated in honor of the Gagne Brothers Alexandre, Henri and Louis who all died in World War II. They were the sons of Bernadette Gagne.

A second memorial will be built to honor Mrs. Bernadette Gagne and will be placed close to the one in memory of her family.





Not Leo Fontaine August 07, 2012 at 02:09 AM
If the Jolicoeur brothers were alive today,commissioner Fontaine would be taxing them to death.
beelzebub August 07, 2012 at 01:08 PM
In the meantime.....Leo's right hand man, Tom "the iceman" Bruce is coordinating the biggest tax sale in the history of Woonsocket.Can't pay the rent?Get out on the street.
Common Sense August 07, 2012 at 01:46 PM
Stay on topic gentlemen...show some respect for these men that died to protect your right to go on your anti Fontaine diatribe
Memere August 07, 2012 at 01:58 PM
Thank You to all the people in Woonsocket who are showing their support for this memorial by putting white crosses on their properties. It's nice to see the community pulling together for a common cause.
beelzebub August 07, 2012 at 02:55 PM
Since i have a right to go on my "anti Fontaine" diatribe,i'll stay decidedly off-topic.Thank you very much.
Common Sense August 07, 2012 at 03:07 PM
It's about respecting those that died for that right. You obviously have trouble showing respect for these men. You should be ashamed. Spew your hatred for him on stories about money and/or politics.
beelzebub August 07, 2012 at 03:15 PM
I live in the here and now,how about showing some "respect" for the poor people who are getting thrown out on the street.I'm sure the Jolicoeur brothers would understand that,after all,they didn't die so we could all go down the tubes.
pitbull tickler August 07, 2012 at 04:47 PM
I have to say, the quality of The Patch has really declined since the first year, when Sandy Phaneuf was the reporter/editor. The people they have now are either dum, disinterested, or lazy. One of the headlines they have posted today is actually a link to a rival publication, the Valley Breeze.
Taxpayer with Commonsense August 07, 2012 at 05:34 PM
Funny how much Leo cares about this memorial so much now! He's been involved in city politics for over 20 years and probably never even knew it was there until a letter was sent to him to remove it. If it is something that was so important to him and all these other groups selling crosses and camping out to "protect" it why was it in such poor condition? Truth is, yes it is a memorial, serves a pupose, and shouldn't be disrespected, but really Leo, using it as a political ploy to hide the City's other problems that you created! Thank you to the people that assisted in working hard and restoring it to the way it should have been kept for all the other years it was neglected. Maybe someone can write a letter about removing Woonsocket and suddenly there will be a way to fix that too!
beelzebub August 07, 2012 at 05:41 PM
You got it TWC,playing on people's emotions and tugging on their heartstrings for politcal gain.Don't follow this leader or you'll be following him to ruin.
Common Sense August 07, 2012 at 05:56 PM
This is NOT a story about the "poor people being thrown out in the streets". It is about men who died in the name of freedom. You people have no class. True Woonsocket Rockets....fools. I live in a town in the Northwest part of the state and my taxes are double yours. Stop crying. Woah is me my taxes are too high. Thanks Susan
beelzebub August 07, 2012 at 07:21 PM
This is a story about Woonsocket,not the northwest part of the state.If you can't read between the lines and see that it's a very political story then you're blind.
Common Sense August 07, 2012 at 07:59 PM
This is NOT a Woonsocket story. It is a story about a monument that happens to be in Woonsocket. It is a story about men who happened to be from Woonsocket. Men with courage who died for their country. You probably have never served anyone but yourself. This story is not about Leo Fontaine or the financial difficulties that the city is facing. You are the blind one for not seeing that.
beelzebub August 07, 2012 at 08:08 PM
This story is about a political hack trying to score points with an overtaxed electorate.I don't know why you call yourself common sense,maybe it's all about you and your version of common sense.
English first August 07, 2012 at 11:06 PM
My first time agreeing with you Pitbull. But when the PAtch posts a great positive story about great students, or great citizens no one even notices. There are many well written positive stories that get "slammed" by the same people day after day.
Steve August 07, 2012 at 11:49 PM
EF, these positive “Deans List” stories you're talking about are dwarfed by the stories about folks who are being driven from their homes due to the total mismanagement by the City and the WED. And to tell you the truth, I find them tiring and redundant. I know, you don't like to hear about the stories like the 110+ properties that were sold at auction today for non-payment of taxes and services, but oh well, this is a fact of life now in the “Quiet City of Woonsocket”. Where’s that story on the Patch????? And to all those who seem to think that certain postings don’t belong in certain places, Get over it! Like I’ve been told numerous times on the Patch, if you don’t like it, work for the Patch and sensor the postings! 99% of the city had no clue where or what this monument was about until a four months ago when we were told to remove it from public property. Remember what happened to Cranston? Can the city afford to justify it’s position when you’re talking about defending a position that’s already been decided by the courts? This is going to get real interesting, especially when we’re talking hundreds of thousands of dollars to defend the city’s position. Let the flamers begin........... Oh, and EF, try the "Patch" rather than the "PAtch"......
Common Sense August 08, 2012 at 12:15 AM
You may also exercise another right that these men died for and vote for someone else next November. I'm certain that you will find something to complain about them too.
beelzebub August 08, 2012 at 02:10 AM
I don't vote for hacks and bozo Fontaine ran unopposed last time.Stop spouting off about my rights,what about my right to have enough cash to put food on the table?It's got nothing to do with those soldiers,it's got everything to do with my right not to be taxed into the poor house.This guy's a hack and he's brainwashing everyone that he's ripping off to think he's a good guy. Don't forget,they fought the revolutionary war because of unfair taxation.
Common Sense August 08, 2012 at 03:08 AM
A: could have written a name in B: could have run against him C: you probably don't even vote D: get a better paying job because its time to pay up...the rest of the State saw tax increases EVERY year while you rockets rode the gravy train full of state and federal money. The tax man cometh for you...hahaha
beelzebub August 08, 2012 at 10:54 AM
You'd be the guy at the Boston Tea Party telling the colonists that they're complaining too much and to give King George his due.Don't forget to go to the press conference and listen to all the political BS.Brainwashed you are and brainwashed you'll always be.
J. Duhamel August 08, 2012 at 11:07 AM
Gotta agree with beelzebub on this one Common Sense,but he/she sure picked a weird name.
English first August 08, 2012 at 12:30 PM
Steve. This is a great statement. Thanks.. "These positive “Deans List” stories you're talking about are dwarfed by the stories about folks who are being driven from their homes due to the total mismanagement by the City and the WED. And to tell you the truth, I find them tiring and redundant." Tiring and redundant?
J. Duhamel August 08, 2012 at 03:12 PM
Steve,most of the people posting in here would just step over anyone made homeless by this tax sale on their way to visit the monument and not even think twice about it.But don't worry,Leo will go to church on Sunday.Might get him a few votes next time around.
J. Duhamel August 08, 2012 at 03:35 PM
Common sense dictates that you spell it woe,not woah.
Common Sense August 08, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Its about respecting and honoring the memory of those that died in service to their country, but it is apparent that you nothing of service to others or respect.
pitbull tickler August 08, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Read between the lines? How is that possible? There's barely anything here to read. The so-called "reporter" was not at the event. She probably avoids coming to Woonsocket whenever possible. The story was clearly "written" by calling someone at City Hall and asking them to send her stuff. Then it was posted here -- several days after the event, I might add
Steve August 08, 2012 at 04:19 PM
CS, if this statement is directed at me, then here's a quick response to it. My dad served in WWII and was decorated with a DFC, (Distinguished Flying Cross) along with several other decorations. I visit his grave site every weekend to pay respects to him as well as pay respect to all the other veterans buried along side of him. I've been doing this for the over 35 years now. So when you go spewing statements of knowing nothing of service or respect, think before you speak. And for the monument that's in question, it's not the monument itself that has the group from Wisconsin fired up, it's the cross that sits on top of it. Do some homework. Here's an idea, remove the cross from the top of the monument and place it in a local church along with a plaque that dedicates where it came from. In its place, put a bronze eagle or some other armed forces insignia on top, have a rededication ceremony, and there you go, no more Wisconsin lawsuit or interjection! Case closed…….. Problem solved........ Now that’s real Common Sense!
Russell Archambault August 08, 2012 at 07:37 PM
STEVE; next time you go to visit your dad and pay your respect to all the veterans, please let them know that I thank all of them for their service also. Russ


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something