It’s been 19 years since the Patriots Peace Memorial walls were put up to remember the military men and women who died while serving.Each year, a new name gets put up giving families and friends a place to grieve for their loss. During this year’s Memorial Day, the grounds of the Patriots Peace Memorial played host for a ceremony honoring United States Army Sgt. First Class Michael Longest, of New Albany, Indiana. The Purple Heart recipient was undergoing pre-deployment active duty training at Fort Campbell in 2003, when he suffered a heart attack and died.”This was a personal friend, and a volunteer for Toys for Tots,” said Mary Broussard, retired Marine. “It was kind of emotional.”Michael Longest’s name is now on a glass that will be cemented into the memorial’s wall forever. The names are of the patriots who died while serving, but not because of combat. Broussard said it’s a way of giving family and friends a place to grieve.”(Longest is) buried somewhere up in Indiana, in a very difficult place to get to,” said Broussard. “This is a place for many. They don’t have a place for their loved one, so this is like a cemetery for them.”The idea to come up with a place like this came in 2002, with the help of benefactors David and Betty Jones. The two, who passed away within 30 days of each other in 2019, were honored with the planting of the Kentucky State Tree. Leaders believe it will grow to look over the memorial, much like the Jones’ did during their lifetime.”I think it was important to them of honoring service, in particularly military service,” said Dan Jones, son of Betty and David. “They didn’t care so much about the recognition for themselves, but they would’ve been very happy that there was a ceremony honoring somebody, and all these people showed up to see that.”With the addition of Michael Longest, there are now 457 patriots from the region whose name is on the Patriots Peace Memorial.

It’s been 19 years since the Patriots Peace Memorial walls were put up to remember the military men and women who died while serving.

Each year, a new name gets put up giving families and friends a place to grieve for their loss. During this year’s Memorial Day, the grounds of the Patriots Peace Memorial played host for a ceremony honoring United States Army Sgt. First Class Michael Longest, of New Albany, Indiana. The Purple Heart recipient was undergoing pre-deployment active duty training at Fort Campbell in 2003, when he suffered a heart attack and died.

Advertisement

“This was a personal friend, and a volunteer for Toys for Tots,” said Mary Broussard, retired Marine. “It was kind of emotional.”

Michael Longest’s name is now on a glass that will be cemented into the memorial’s wall forever. The names are of the patriots who died while serving, but not because of combat. Broussard said it’s a way of giving family and friends a place to grieve.

“(Longest is) buried somewhere up in Indiana, in a very difficult place to get to,” said Broussard. “This is a place for many. They don’t have a place for their loved one, so this is like a cemetery for them.”

The idea to come up with a place like this came in 2002, with the help of benefactors David and Betty Jones. The two, who passed away within 30 days of each other in 2019, were honored with the planting of the Kentucky State Tree. Leaders believe it will grow to look over the memorial, much like the Jones’ did during their lifetime.

“I think it was important to them of honoring service, in particularly military service,” said Dan Jones, son of Betty and David. “They didn’t care so much about the recognition for themselves, but they would’ve been very happy that there was a ceremony honoring somebody, and all these people showed up to see that.”

With the addition of Michael Longest, there are now 457 patriots from the region whose name is on the Patriots Peace Memorial.

Source