KOKOMO, Ind. – The Indiana University Kokomo Student Veterans Organization (SVO) dedicated a veteran’s memorial boulder on campus Friday, November 11, to remember and honor those who have served in the military. The memorial proudly displays both IU and Purdue University logos.
The campus, community, and veterans took time to honor those who served by dedicating the veteran’s memorial boulder recently placed in front of the main building at IU Kokomo. It reads, “Dedicated to the men and women who served in the Armed Forces.”
Annette Wray, previous president of SVO and veteran herself, made it a priority to show that IU Kokomo is a friendly campus for all, leading to the creation of the memorial.
“My motivation to have this memorial placed was to give other student veterans a visual acknowledgement for all they have done,” Wray said. “This memorial is a recognition of finishing a goal and dream that I started 25 years ago when I signed my name on that dotted line, agreed to defend our country, and worked to receive a college education.
“I hope as other student veterans receive their degrees, they will feel the same,” she added.
Chancellor Michael Harris commented that this memorial is a very crucial and important part of campus.
“All that we have, we owe to those who serve,” Harris said. “This monument is very vital to acknowledging that, and it is done in a beautiful and respectful manner. We carry a great debt and appreciation for those who serve, and this is a permanent, physical sight that will forever allow people to take a second to reflect and say ‘thanks.’”
Brian Arwood, current president of SVO and a veteran, worked hard to finalize the event and make it meaningful for others.
“Many veterans do not receive any gratitude, and it is disappointing. The first time someone thanked me for my service was very overwhelming. It means a lot,” Arwood said. “The best thing you can do for a veteran is remember them and appreciate them and their service. That’s what we are doing with this dedication ceremony.”
Preceding the dedication ceremony, the National Roll Call event began at 7:45 a.m. in Kresge Auditorium. This is a nationwide reading of the 6,254 names of service members who lost their lives during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.