Lynchburg, VA - Lynchburg City Council has signed off on building a memorial at Monument Terrace for veterans of the Iraq, Afghanistan, and Persian Gulf Wars. The effort is being spear-headed by a Lynchburg Iraq War veteran.
Monument Terrace is a tribute to all those Lynchburg residents who gave the ultimate sacrifice in conflicts dating as far back as the Civil War.
But now in a new century, in a new time, a new memorial may be added, for new wars.
Growing up, Robert Short's father would often bring him to Monument Terrace.
"To try and instill in me that, never take what we have for granted because this is what it costs" said Short.
His gratitude for the fallen is as strong as the stone they're remembered by, "this may just be an etching in the rock, but this was somebody's son, this was somebody's brother" he said.
So at 18, he took that gratitude and enlisted in the Army; Short served two, year-long tours in Iraq. When he came home, he says, things changed.
"The people who didn't serve, they just didn't understand. My fear is the people who came home wounded would not be remembered" he said.
So, he's begun to try and have a memorial built at Monument Terrace for all those who served in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Persian Gulf Wars.
"We will find a place and an appropriate memorial or plaque or something to honor their service" said Vietnam veteran, Steve Bozeman.
Bozeman is serving on a city-sanctioned committee to oversee the memorial's development. He helped install the Terrace's Purple Heart and POW Memorials.
He says, given his experience, this new one won't be built overnight, "It took 41 years for the World War II guys to get their memorial" he said.
But he says it'll be well worth the wait, "I'm honored to be a part of this and to help these young warriors" said Bozeman.
"That's a sign that the city of Lynchburg and the citizens of Lynchburg respect and honor his service, and still care" said Short.
No word on when it will be built. The memorial committee will be looking into fundraising to pay for it. Other recent memorials on the terrace cost upwards of $50,000.