Today was the first day of fall.
Well actually, it was the seventeenth but the first that felt like a crisp autumn day in the Midwest. A week ago, I drove past a beautiful memorial but I did not have time to stop. Well after a busy week I found myself with a little time on my hands and a great reason to head to the city of Kokomo, Indiana and home to the Howard County Veterans Memorial. I knew nothing about the history of this memorial and as beautiful as it looks from the road I was more impressed the closer I got.
The Blue/Gold Star Family Memorial is one of the first things you notice as you approach the memorial and to say it is moving is an understatement.
I cannot begin to understand what these families feel.
I have never had to try to sleep wondering if my child was literally laying down their lives at that moment to preserve my freedom. Looking at this mother’s arm outstretched reaching for her son while her son, in uniform, is reaching back from some remote unfamiliar country is enough to bring chills on a hot day let alone a chilly autumn afternoon.
The POW memorial is inspirational simplicity at its best.
I always love to see this flag waving but seeing it in this venue it is impossible to miss the message. Is there a bigger sacrifice than a man who lives most of his life imprisoned fighting for the freedom we take for granted every day of our lives?
After seeing such a pristine memorial, I decided to get more information about the history and the people who built and maintain the memorial.
Vietnam Veteran Roger Roe deserves credit for having the vision. Everyone from friends and local government to the Local UAW helped Roe make his dream a reality. The initial display was opened to the public in the year 2000 but the memorial has grown over the years. The latest addition is the Families Statue Memorial, a monument dedicated to the families of the men and women who served in the United States military.
If you are from the Kokomo area and you have not visited this magnificent tribute to those who have served, you owe it to yourself to stop by. If you are travelling through Kokomo, plan a little extra time to visit. The memorial has plenty of seating and sits adjacent to a park so bring a picnic and plan to stay awhile and enjoy the dream that Roger Roe and the local Howard County community made into a reality. If you want to see more pictures and learn more about The Howard County Veterans Memorial you can visit their website at http://hcvmc.com/