The opening of the memorial site began at another memorial site – at the monument of the autotanks' regiment with songs of the folklore band “Vilki”. Nearly two kilometers of torchlighted walk concluded in Pārdaugava, Sudrabkalniņš, where 85 years ago, President Kārlis Ulmanis opened the memorial.
“It was exactly 85 years ago, October 31. It can now be said that by the sunset of 31 October, patriot month has already started. [..] At the time the monument was erected, this was a very visible place. This little Slokas Street was Slokas Highway – the main road to Jūrmala,” said Gunars Nāgels, director of the Riga Monuments Agency.
Over the years, the monument suffered from vandal attacks and the hands of time. It has undergone a previous restoration in 2008, but has just been restored again.
“It is very important for us to dominate our own memorials in the public space, because this is Latvia here. There must be our history here, there must be our culture, our language. I also see this in the context of the movement launched since the Russian attack in Ukraine on the removal of the signs of occupation,” said the President of Latvia, Egils Levits.
The local government has committed to restoring its most important memorial sites – those that symbolize the fights of freedom.