OGDEN -- Two new monuments bearing the names of nearly 200 Purple Heart recipients were installed Monday at the George E. Wahlen Ogden Veterans Home and will be unveiled Friday.
The new additions are placed alongside four existing monuments, said Dave Bott, owner of Mark E. Bott Company in Ogden.
His company inscribed the names on the granite monuments donated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. State Stone did the finish work and polishing of the monuments.
"They are really beautiful," Bott said. "When the veterans home was built, they had us remove the memorials at Hill Air Force Base and install them at the new place, so now there will be a total of six monuments."
In addition, Bott said, a duplicate of a national monument recognizing the Purple Heart has been placed at the veterans home, along with another monument with the names of Purple Heart recipients who fought in the Korean War battle of Chosin Reservoir.
"Oh, they fought their way out of a terrible situation," Bott said. "It was considered one of the top battles of all time."
On Monday, Bott delivered the monuments to the veterans home, and a covering was placed over them. An unveiling ceremony is set for 9 a.m. Friday.
"I think it's really a great thing," said veterans home resident Art Keeley. "I think people should know the names of those who were willing to give their blood so others can have the freedom they now enjoy."
Keeley, 85, served in the Army's 24th Infantry Division's 6th Tank Battalion during the Korean War. While driving a convoy truck full of supplies, he was hit by enemy fire.
"My partner was driving, and he lost two toes. I was injured in the thigh," he said.
"I spent about 10 days in the hospital. In fact, when I woke up in the hospital, there was this beautiful nurse standing over me. I thought I had died and gone to heaven."
Keeley recovered and returned to his duties. He later received the Purple Heart for his sacrifice.
The Purple Heart, which is awarded to those who have been wounded or killed while serving their country, also was given to veterans home resident Fred Beyer.
Beyer, 88, was injured twice. The Army paratrooper with the 517th Regimental Combat Team got caught in a minefield, where shrapnel gouged his left arm. The second injury came during the Battle of the Bulge, where he lost his right arm.
"I am proud to have done what I've done," he said.
"I still have the shrapnel in my shoulder, and I do have a prosthesis, but I would still do it all over again."