Living Memorial Sculpture Garden

13221 US 97
Weed, CA 96094


The Vision:

In the summer of 1987, Ric A. Delugo, an artist and Vietnam vet, envisioned a living memorial to Vietnam veterans: a dedicated forest grove consisting of more than 58,000 trees, one planted for each American service person killed in the Vietnam War. He explained his idea to a friend, John Sutter of the United States Forest Service, who became instrumental in presenting the idea to the USFS, and helped guide the project through the bureaucratic process.

Over time, the concept expanded from the Vietnam War to include a broader understanding of War, and its effects upon all human beings caught up in the process.

As the concept further evolved, Delugo's vision included the installation of a series of metal sculptures beginning with the "Why?" group. To help him in this creation, he spent weeks tracking down an old friend and artist, Dennis Smith, a Marine veteran of Vietnam, who had a talent for making large steel sculptures of expressive grace. Dennis had been contemplating a similar vision. Together, they joined forces for the project.

In 1988, Dennis arrived in Siskiyou County with $6 in his pocket. At first, all Ric could offer Dennis was a place to live and food. But as time passed, they began getting small donations, enough to buy materials and tools needed to move the project forward.

The Living Memorial Sculpture Garden started with the acquisition of 136 acres of U.S. Forest Service land, about 13 miles north of Weed, CA on Hwy 97. Soon, the idea took hold within the Siskiyou County community, and beyond. Many people came forward to donate their time and labor, as well as make generous financial contributions for the creation of the garden.

More than 90,000 trees were planted by families, elementary and high school children, agriculture classes, church groups, 4H clubs, as well as members of organizations such as C.A.T.T.L.E., and Veterans groups, such 41st Division VFW, the American Legion, and AMVETS . The Garden's trees were provided by the United States Forest Service.

Images provided by, Ticketmaster
Please use "Flag This Place" to alert us about content that is inappropriate or needs immediate attention. Nothing you submit will be shared with other site visitors.

Upcoming AARP Events

View All AARP Events »

Find information about getting a COVID-19 vaccine in your state. CDC information is available at; additional AARP information and resources are at En español, visite

AARP Member Card

Join or Renew Today


  • Immediate access to your member benefits
  • Discounts on travel and everyday savings
  • Subscription to the award-winning AARP The Magazine
  • An ally on the issues that matter most to you in Weed
  • Free membership for your spouse or partner