Lexington memorial honors veterans who continued the spirit of service beyond the battlefield
A new monument stands in Lexington’s Veterans Park – this one honoring veterans for more than their service during wartime.
The 23 Fayette County residents inducted into the Kentucky Veterans Hall of Fame all made a decision when they returned home – to continue serving in a different capacity.
"Let us remember that the service of our veterans does not end with their time in uniform," said Brigadier General Ben Adams. "They embody honor, integrity, and sacrifice not only on the battlefield but also in their daily lives."
While the return to civilian life presents its own challenges, many go on to embrace different ways of giving back, with some becoming teachers, firefighters, police officers, or community leaders.
Reverend Dr. Jim Thurman, a Hall of Fame inductee, said he faced that choice after returning from duty.
"I came up during the Vietnam era and there was quite a different take on American life then. Things were a little different. But having been drafted and then coming back, seeing that there was also a need to continue to work in the community so I chose that route, rather than some of the other routes I could've taken," Thurman said. "But again, it was an honor not only to serve the country but to some back to serve in my community and make it a better place."
In all, nearly 250 individuals have been inducted into the Kentucky Veterans Hall of Fame.