Global War on Terror memorial to be on display

Published 1:35 pm Friday, November 12, 2021

A Global War on Terror memorial honoring the soldiers whose lives were lost during the war will be on display next week at the War Memorial Civic Center located at 250 West 7th Street in DeRidder.

The display will be open for public viewing beginning Wednesday, Nov. 17 at 1 p.m. and will remain in the auditorium of the civic center through Nov. 21.

Admission to view the memorial is free. The daily schedule provided by the civic center will be Nov. 18 and 19, 8 a.m. until 9 p.m. and Nov. 20 through Nov. 21 from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.

The Fallen Heroes memorial is sponsored by the Veterans & Athletes United (VAU). It stands at six feet tall and 28 feet wide and is made up of 7,063 red, silver and blue dog tags that together take on the sobering form of the American flag when it is draped over a fallen service member’s casket. Each dog tag is engraved with the name of a service member who made the ultimate sacrifice during the War on Terror.

While the stars on the American flag are traditionally white, the stars on the memorial have been painted gold to pay tribute to gold star families nationwide.

The memorial was completed in 2018 and has since traveled to over 50 different locations across the nation for public viewing. It is currently on display at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. in honor of Veterans Day.

This will be the first time that the Fallen Heroes Memorial will be on display in Louisiana, and War Memorial Civic Center board director Faith Scott said that the board is “incredibly honored” to be able to bring the memorial to DeRidder, a community with a strong military presence.

“There are many people in our community who do not have the ability to travel and see incredible memorials and monuments such as this, and so I believe it is very important to be able to bring them here,” Scott stated.

The War Memorial Civic Center was the first off-base USO in the U.S., and is home to numerous artifacts from WWII. In 2019, the civic center hosted The Moving Wall, a memorial to Vietnam veterans, and in the near future Scott said she hopes to host a WWII memorial.