April 28, 2023
By Lane Kimble
The solemn wail of bagpipes around the Capitol Square in Madison on Thursday afternoon pulled attention to the people quietly following them.
Their relatively short walk from Monona Terrace to St. Patrick’s Catholic Church was a powerful one, with participants honoring family, friends, and colleagues who died on the job.
Some wore sweatshirts with names, others carried signs and banners as they made their way to the seventh annual Construction Workers Memorial.
“The construction industry is one of the workplaces most impacted by worksite deaths, but we are committed to reducing that number every year until we reach a time where there are no more deaths that we have to gather to memorialize,” Emily Pritzkow, the Wisconsin Building Trades Council Executive Director, told WTBA shortly before the service.
In 2021, there were more than 2,400 construction and transportation industry deaths.
“We have highly trained, highly skilled workers that take their jobs really seriously, which makes it all the worse when we do have incidents like this occur, and we want to commemorate those losses accordingly,” Pritzkow said.