"Nobody wants to go to war. Nobody wants to die. But we volunteer for it.”
A towering granite memorial now pays tribute to some of Fort Carson's fallen heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Family members, and even some soldiers, wept as this monument was dedicated on Thursday morning.
Fort Carson's Third Armored Cavalry Regiment took heavy losses during the war with Iraq. A total of 49 soldiers in this regiment were killed---32 of them were based at the Mountain Post. Now there's a lasting reminder of the sacrifices those soldiers made.
Just days before Memorial Day, a new 10-foot-tall black granite memorial is unveiled to honor more brave soldiers who have given their lives in Iraq. Each soldiers’ name is etched in the stone. It was paid for through donations.
Bill Pollard looks on---thinking about his son, PFC Justin Pollard. "People will look at this this---look at this monument---as a testament of what our troops are about. What America is about," he says. Meeting other families of fallen soldiers gives him comfort. "We'll never forget, but there is some healing that goes on. I think this helps---it really does."
PFC Richard Becktel lost three close friends in Iraq. He knew this day would hit him hard. "There's no greater honor I can show, than to show my support for my fallen friends." He plans to visit this spot again when he can be by himself. "Just to see their names and to remember them."
The ceremony was packed with hundreds of family members and soldiers. Their losses still hurt. The monument represents lost friends---remembered forever at Fort Carson.