Honoring our Nation’s Veterans

Veterans Memorial All of us owe a debt to those who risked all to serve their country, and when an entire region decides to honor America’s veterans, the enormity of that debt becomes even more apparent. And that’s just what happened Sunday when several hundred folks came together at the Elizabethtown Nature Park to attend the opening ceremonies for the Hardin County Veterans Tribute.

Of course there were veterans there, from WWII, Korea, Vietnam and more recent conflicts. And plenty of active duty military were in attendance. But also there were local citizens, proud to be part of something special, and honored to be in the presence of those who have served. For veterans, the Tribute was an ideal place to hold a Sunday’s activities, as well as a place with the potential to heal some old wounds while showing appreciation for all veterans.

Several speakers talked about how the tribute had come to fruition and what veterans mean to them, an Army band from Fort Knox played inspirational music, and a men’s chorus sang “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.” But the most meaningful part of the afternoon’s festivities was when the statues honoring the men and women who served, including a Soldier, a Marine, a Sailor, an Airman, a Coast Guard Seaman and a Civil Servant, were unveiled — And lastly, a pair of empty bronze boots, to honor those who didn’t come home. Surrounding the statues is a sidewalk with inlaid bricks and pavers, each purchased by local businesses and individuals that helped to pay for the memorial. Many of these bricks hold the names of those who served, paid for by their friends and families.

Veterans MemorialIf you’ve got some time, and want to see something new, beautiful and special, then make visiting the Hardin County Veterans Tribute a planned destination. You’ll be glad you did. And by the way, there’s room for more of those bricks and pavers if you’re interested in honoring veterans in general, or a few in particular! Contact Gary Broadway at (270) 319-1051. Bricks are $250 and pavers are $500.