Purple Heart Memorial

by Christa Lollis

For 12 years the local purple heart chapter has wanted to honor all the soldiers whose sacrifice has earned them a medal. A few months ago this memorial started to become a reality and it's one that State Representative Wayne Christian says all soldiers deserve. "I know I always say a lot of people say well the most honored people should be include indeed and should the preachers in our community, the teachers but understand none of that would be possible if not for the vets and active service people that have risked their lives and given their lives so that we can participate in this democracy," Representative Wayne Christian explained.

Today the new memorial was unveiled. The local chapter hopes it raises awareness about what the medal really means because they say many people don't even know. Retired soldier, Oren Whiddon says, "Military order of the purple heart recognize those who fought and were wounded and survived. It also recognizes those who fought and were killed."

Former and active soldiers, some who have received the purple heart themselves, were happy to see such a tribute to their fellow service men and women. "They were our buddies, many of which were faceless and we never knew their names, we only buried them after the combat was over," Whiddon said. While hundreds of purple heart recipients are buried across the country, their memory will always be honored right here in Nacogdoches.