Unveiled from under a cover of red white and blue, the brand new, "Heroes Showcase" is now on display at the Fresno VA Hospital. Every item behind the glass, once belonged to a veteran and was donated by the military member or their family.
"We get a lot of donations. People say my father passed away, would you like to have this or this was something my husband had, would you like it," said Acting Director Of VA Hospital Central California of Susan Shyshka, "We need to honor them the way they've been kept in those families for many years."
Authentic items like a Honolulu newspaper from 1941 with the headline war, after the Pearl Harbor bombing, sand from the beach at Normandy, a model of the USS Bunker Hill, and a Bible from a chaplain to a soldier, dated July, 1945.
Vietnam and Desert Storm veteran, Adolf Reyes watched the unveiling of the display and reflected on his own years of service -- thankful for the chance to serve his country while others continue to thank him. "Thirty-three years of service. I'm a grateful veteran. A lot of people come up to me and shake my hand. That's really inspiring."
Daniel Desantis of the Fresno Regional Foundation that donated the funds for the glass showcase said, "Unveiling the project on September 11th makes it truly memorable. "This is a day that none of us will ever forget -- and we owe so much to our veterans and so we're very pleased to be able to honor them in this way on this day."
While we remember the heroes of September 11th, veterans say displays like the Heroes Showcase and the Wall Of Honor remind us to never forget all veterans of all wars, and remember the service and sacrifice of generations of military members.