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PALO, Iowa - A committee of only three people in the small town of Palo set out on a mission just nine months ago.
They raised $9,000 and had a monument built just in time for Veterans Day. It sits in the heart of town on 1st Street. The people of Palo gathered Sunday afternoon to recognize the city's newest addition.
A little girl with her dolly stood among many others, all with tiny flags in hand. Towering just above them was a shining reminder of the country's finest: a monument built for all veterans.
For the people in this crowd, this statue on a brick column fulfills a big role.
"It just brings back so many memories you know," said Palo Resident Merna Back.
Back knows the pain of loss all too well.
"You know, all of those that we lost. I lost a buddy in Vietnam when that was going on and several friends, so it just means so much to me," Back said.
Terry Sanders pushed to get this project done is less than a year. The committee decided to place it strategically on one of the busiest roads in town. Now that it's done, she know it means a lot to people in town.
"I hope you're proud daddy," Sanders said while looking up.
The monument also means a lot to her.
"I think of him and I think of all the veterans ... even if one person, once a month, goes by and thinks of our veterans, it's worth it," Sanders said.
It's a worthwhile project to show every bit of appreciation for those fighting for our freedoms, guaranteeing they're never forgotten.
Monument committee members said the monument is also built with old bricks from the city's 1920s school. The bricks were saved from the flood, scrubbed clean and given a new purpose as part of the memorial.