By Kate Raddatz

HASTINGS, Minn. (WCCO) — Thursday is Veterans Day, and a new monument to those who serve is being dedicated in Hastings.

The Heroes Monument is 60 feet long and 6 feet high, in the shape of the United Heroes League logo — a shield. At the center is an American Flag.

Hastings Heroes Monument (credit: CBS)

“It dawned on me one day, we’re really losing our stories from veterans,” said veteran Shane Hudella. He came up with the concept of a monument as a way to preserve history and celebrate veterans. “It’s just to preserve that legacy.”

When it’s completely finished, the monument will be covered in bricks that families and friends can sponsor to commemorate a service member.

Lou Chicquette, a B-29 tail gunner who earned the Distinguished Flying Cross and three Air Medals, was the guest of honor on Thursday. He cut the ribbon to officially dedicate the monument.

“There aren’t many of us left from World War II so I feel so much warmth and understanding,” he said.

Once all of the bricks are purchased, 4,300 service members will be honored. The memorial will open to the public in the spring.

Kate Raddatz