Neosho dedicates “Patriots Memorial” to heroes

Neosho dedicates “Patriots Memorial” to heroes
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A memorial dedicated to patriots who serve our country and the community comes to completion in Neosho, Missouri.

Hundreds attended Saturday’s dedication ceremony where people came together to celebrate making this vision a reality.

William Doubek raises a flag for prisoners of war that joins five others waving proudly for each branch of the military. It’s something he’s honored to do for the brothers he lost in Vietnam.

“Last combat mission I was in, we lost 23 of 51 men. 23 died and I can’t…I’ll never forget their names. I’ll never forget them,” said Doubek.

Remembering the past and honoring the fallen: it’s why the patriots memorial is here.

“We wanted to remember all the armed forces that gave everything for us as well as the first responders. We think this is the first memorial that actually memorializes all our first responders.” said Dave Padgett, Chairman of the Neosho Patriots Memorial Committee.

Padgett says the idea for the memorial came about two years ago, but once the Neosho Exchange Club got the ball rolling, donations came pouring in. Within eight months, the $60,000 dollar memorial was paid in full.

“It was wonderful to see the people give. This memorial could go up debt free. Nobody had to go into debt to put it up, all because of the citizens of Neosho, the veterans, here in our county. It’s just been a great thing,” said Doubek.

“Being in Iraq and Afghanistan myself, you know…my father, Korean war, two tours in Vietnam…my great grandfather, a private in World War I. I mean this is really a remembrance of them and hopefully there will be other services here to commemorate those who have served our country,” said Mark Bartley with Post 392 in Pineville, Missouri.

By night , the flag will be lit, and by day, the memorial will be a gathering place for patriots and supporters from the community.

“It’s just to remember all of our friends, all of our loved ones who aren’t with us. Remebering them, that helps. It sure does,” said Doubek.

Fallen first responders will be remembered with name plates, placed on the memorial wall, providing a space for loved ones to reflect and even K-9 officers are being honored with their own plaque.