Fallen Heroes Memorial on display in Lynchburg until Friday

Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 10:03 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - More than 7,000 names etched onto dog tags and 50 gold stars make up the Veterans and Athletes United “Fallen Heroes Memorial.” The display honors the men and women in the U.S. military who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the Global War on Terror.

“It’s powerful stuff, right? There’s a lot of names of a lot of brave men and women who did their part to serve their community,” said Nathaniel Cuellar, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran.

“I saw it set up and I really took some time to really take it in, you know, it’s it’s kind of awe-inspiring and very humbling,” said Michael Munoz, a U.S. Army veteran.

Munoz was in the Army for 22 years; he deployed to Iraq three times and once to Afghanistan. Cuellar was a Marine for eight years and deployed to Iraq twice. Both knew people who didn’t come home.

“I’ve known several people that have died in in Iraq,” said Munoz.

“There’s a few names from Fallujah that are up there,” said Cuellar.

Both feel the memorial speaks volumes about not taking what we all have for granted.

“We just need to take a moment to just appreciate what people have done for us, and in some way take that motivation and pay it forward in their community,” said Cuellar.

“It’s important for people to really understand how many people laid down their lives for our country, so we can have the lifestyle that we live here,” said Munoz.

The veterans hope each passerby can take the time to read the names on each dog tag and continue the mission of making sure they are never forgotten.

The “Fallen Heroes Memorial” will be on display until Friday afternoon at Monument Terrace in Lynchburg. For more information on it, head to VAU’s website here.