CAPE CORAL, Fla. – At the Southwest Florida Military Museum, an impressive crowd came to honor the nation’s bravest men and women during a special Memorial Day ceremony.
“Specifically those that saved this country, they put their lives on the line, and a lot of them are gone,” said Korean War veteran Phil Hicks.
“Too many guys have lost their life making this day happen, and you know I’m ashamed to say a lot of people don’t realize today’s a big day,” said former Green Beret Robert LaChance.
At the ceremony, the city ushered in a new era of commitment to local military heroes. It officially became a Purple Heart city, meaning it formally recognizes the sacrifices made by men and women killed or wounded in combat.
“The city of Cape Coral appreciates the sacrifices that our Purple Heart recipients made defending our freedom, and believes that it is important that we acknowledge them for their courage and sacrifice,” said Cape Coral Mayor Marni Sawicki.
“We can’t thank you enough, this is a special day, and again, let’s remember the men and women who can’t be here with us today, ’cause that’s what it’s about,” said Sgt. Michael Lipari, a Purple Heart recipient and soon-to-be Cape Coral resident.
Cape Coral is the sixth Purple Heart city in the state, and the first in Southwest Florida.