On Monday, June 20, after a six-and-a-half year wait, the San Bernardino County memorial to the victims of the 2015 San Bernardino terror attack opens to the public.
County Environmental Health Services employees were at an off-site training event on Dec. 2, 2015, at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino when a coworker and his wife opened fire on them in a meeting room. Fourteen people were killed and 22 wounded. Both shooters were later killed in a gun battle with police.
Families of the victims, survivors and first responder agencies toured the newly completed memorial in a private ceremony on Friday, June 17.
A committee made up of county staff, survivors of the attack and family members, selected Oakland-based designer Walter Hood to craft the memorial. He’s is an internationally known landscape architect and designer, who also designed the Broad Museum Plaza in downtown Los Angeles.
Hood’s design, the Curtain of Courage memorial, is located on the eastern side of the San Bernardino County Government Center on North Arrowhead Avenue in San Bernardino. The $1.3 million memorial features curving mesh panels made of bronze and steel. The curtain is designed to evoke protective gear, with layers of chain meant to resemble a bulletproof vest, according to Hood.
The curtain’s curves create 14 alcoves, one for each of those killed in the 2015 shooting. The alcoves have a panel of colored glass in a shade chosen by victims’ family members. A phrase chosen by family members is inscribed on a bench in each alcove. And inside each bench, invisible to the public, is a small keepsake also chosen by the family. A nearby informational plaque recounts the events of Dec. 2, 2015 in English, Spanish and Vietnamese.
Another memorial to the victims of the attack — a peace garden — opened in 2016 at Cal State San Bernardino.
The Curtain of Courage memorial is scheduled to open to the public at 8 a.m. Monday. It’s located on the east side of the San Bernardino County Government Center at 385 N. Arrowhead Ave. in San Bernardino. For more information, visit December2.sbcounty.gov.