42 names all inscribed on a new monument at the Pennsylvania Military Museum in Boalsburg as families and loved ones looked on.
Sergeant Major Christopher Kepner, 28th Infantry Division Command, said, “We wanted to make this memorial to honor our fallen soldiers from the global war on terrorism the centerpiece today and we really wanted to have a way of honoring those soldiers and making sure that we recognize the gold star families.”
Sergeant Major Kepner was on the committee that helped planned the memorial and created the new monument. He said, “It was really an emotional event. And it was emotive in seeing all of our gold star families.”
The monument was dedicated as part of the memorial service that’s held annually in honor of the soldiers in the 28th infantry division who died serving our country.
Lt. Governor Mike Stack spoke at the event. He said, “As a former 28th infantry division soldier, I know first hand the sacrifices this organization has made. And I am proud and humbled to say that I served alongside members of this prestigious and decorated organization, the oldest division in the entire U.S. Army.”
The 28th infantry division — or the iron division — traces it’s roots back to the militia organized by Benjamin Franklin in 1747. It’s the oldest continuously serving division in the U.S. Army.
Sergeant Major of the Army Daniel Dailey, said, “They understand that a soldier is necessary. They understand that a solider is an offering of sacrifice in pursuit of a higher ideal or cause. They understand a solider defends a people who wont or cant defend themselves.”
The site in Boalsburg started as a training site for the PA National Guard. The museum was built in 1968.
Joe Horvath, who is the museum educator and former Marine, said, “We are in a very peaceful, serene setting in the middle of Pennsylvania and there’s no better place to honor service and sacrifice of our veterans and servicemen.”
The memorial was made by Mayes Memorial from Lemont, Centre County.