AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – The Texas Panhandle War Memorial Center hosted a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony and Purple Heart Medal Presentation on the day before its Education Center opens to the public.
A vintage aircraft flyover salute by West Texas Warbirds kicked off the Texas Panhandle War Memorial Center’s Ribbon Cutting Ceremony.
Bruce Das, President of the Texas Panhandle War Memorial, said “It’s a combination of about seven to eight years that we’ve been working on this with the inspiration of trying to educate young people.”
Bruce Das continued, “what really is involved in a war…and you know the sacrifices that have been made through really the centuries… From the beginning of 1775 ’til present.”
Following the ribbon-cutting, officials from the Department of Texas, Military, Order of the Purple Heart will present a Purple Heart Medal to the family of Captain Eric Das, 333rd Fighter Squadron, Seymore Johnson Air Force Base North Carolina.
Captain Das, a native of Amarillo, was killed in Iraq in 2003. Captain Das’ father, Bruce Das, is president of the Board of the Texas Panhandle War Memorial Center.
His mother who is also a volunteer at the center, Rosie Das, said “And we’re very thankful that they brought another one for us so that we can display it in the display case that Eric.. that we put together for Eric here at the War Memorial.”
As of September 30th, the Texas Panhandle War Memorial Center received the honor of being designated a Purple Heart Museum.
Mary Nell Lemert, interior designer of the building and volunteer, said “that is a wonderful thing that we are a Purple Heart Museum, because we do have several people that have received a Purple Heart.”
The Education Center opens on Thursday, Oct 1.
According to the War Memorial Center, the multi-media center features interactive kiosks for visitors to learn about America’s 11 wars from the Revolutionary War to Afghanistan. Visitors will view artifacts from World Wars I and II, Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf War, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
One of the exhibit’s reported highlights the only battle in U.S. military history in which every soldier was awarded the Medal of Honor – a battle that took place here in the Texas Panhandle.
Bruce Das stated, “…really freedom is bought by the sacrifice of those who have given their life for it.”
Masks and social distancing will be required.
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