Operation Iraqi Freedom Memorial Dedicated At Fort Hood

(April 3, 2006)—The 1st Cavalry Division will honor 168 of it soldiers who gave their lives in the war in Iraq when it dedicates its Operation Iraqi Freedom Memorial Tuesday.

The dedication ceremony is at 10 a.m. Tuesday outside 1st Cavalry Division Headquarters.

The names of the 168 soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice are engraved into polished black granite panels, Fort Hood said, from the same mountain in India that was the source of granite for the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Each granite panel weighs about 3,000 pounds, Fort Hood said.

Altogether the monument includes about 130,000 pounds of black granite and another 113,000 pounds of white granite for the base, Fort Hood said.

A bronze statue that depicts medic Sgt. Matthew Tuttle helping an injured child while Sgt. Joshua Wood provides security occupies the middle of the memorial.

The statue was crafted by an Iraqi artist in Baghdad and was unveiled as the division marked its official return to post from Iraq in May 2005.

Hundreds of people donated money to fund the memorial, many of them 1st Cavalry Division soldiers.

Killeen area residents also contributed material and labor for the project.

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