The Veterans Living Memorial Garden was dedicated Friday morning in the town of Woodstock.
The garden is located on the corner of Main and High streets in the historic downtown area.
In the garden's center is a bench with the inscription, "This living memorial park is dedicated to all military veterans past, present and future - who served in defense of this sovereign nation."
The dedication was attended by a large, proud audience that never seemed to stop applauding. The Massanutten Military Academy Band performed "The Star-Spangled Banner" and the ceremony concluded with the entire crowd singing "America the Beautiful," led by Amanda Wilkins.
In 2007, two U.S. soldiers from the Woodstock area were killed while serving overseas. The two soldiers were Thomas Wilson and David Sheritt.
"The deaths of these two men serving overseas, not too long ago, woke us up a little bit. We needed to do something not only to honor those young men that lost their lives, but all veterans past, present, and future," says Mayor William Moyers.
Family members of the fallen soldiers were at the dedication.
Ethan Wilson, Thomas Wilson's younger brother, says he is proud of his brother.
"I was 14 and he was 21 when he was killed. All four of us in the family, all the kids were really close," says Wilson. "He was a good guy, really lovable, he talked to everybody, just a great guy to be around and funny."
The families are thankful the community came together to do this.
"It's great. A lot of people have done so much and this is just another thing. It just makes us feel great that people remember him and that what he did was so amazing and it really was heroic," says Wilson.
"With the community participating in the fund raising for this project, I think it makes it a little nearer and dearer to our folks," says Moyers.
Lee Gochenour is a U.S. veteran, now living in Woodstock, who served for more than 30 years. He was one of the people who really pushed the memorial project to completion.
"It's been a real privilege to serve the years I have and a it's a great honor to have the opportunity to be here today when they dedicate this memorial," says Gochenour.