Blogger's note: This and the following comment was originally written as newspaper column in 2007.
“Be as a tower firmly set; Shakes not its top for any blast that blows.” __Dante Alighieri
It is often true that you don’t miss something until it is gone. Sometimes you don’t even miss it then. That may the case with the beacon light, of Beacon Lite Road fame, here in Monument.
I received fascinating copies of undated newspaper photos about the Beacon from reader Marianne Zagorski of Palmer Lake, and ever since that time I have been trying to nail down additional details and information. Perhaps you can help?
Zagorski, who has lived in Palmer Lake since the 1960s, says she thinks the tower was taken down in the early 1980s.
“As you’re coming up a long upslope on I-25 from Greenland, look for the beacon light on the right. Turn before you go west to Palmer Lake,” was directions she provided me but I have heard from other sources that it was roughly near where the two existing cell towers are today.
The captions from the photos were the attention getters.
“Aviation hazard – Two members of “C” Company, 4th Engineer Battalion from Fort Carson prepare to demolish a 110 foot tower Wednesday by climbing its base and planting explosive charges. The structure, considered a hazard to aviation, was destroyed as part of a military exercise,” read the cutline that apparently appeared in the Gazette Telegraph, crediting John Morgan with taking the photo.
“Going, going, gone. A little plastic explosive went a long way as a 110-foot tower was demolished in an exercise at Fort Carson. The tower was obtained in Monument and reassembled for a film by the British Broadcasting Company in April. With the film completed, the tower was no longer needed, so members of the 4th Engineer battalion ‘disassembled’ it in their own inimitable way,” read additional caption that appeared on a different page.
“By then we lived opposite the beacon and were disappointed and insulted by this use of it. Such a waste,” noted Zagorski.
Longtime area resident Dorothy Sibell recalled that the tower was removed using a helicopter but was at a loss to give a definitive date. Others recalled it was originally used as a marker to help locate an early airstrip in the area.
Other than that, it is all I have. Any additional information, stories and other recollections would be greatly appreciated. I would like to find a definitive date and know a little more about the film in which it appeared. I am also curious about when it was constructed and for what use.