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Syracuse to become a Purple Heart City

Ava Pukatch

The City of Syracuse is taking steps to show its support to local veterans.

Last fall, Mayor Ben Walsh served as a guardian for Honor Flight, which transports veterans to Washington DC to visit memorials dedicated to their service and sacrifice. A discussion in particular with a Vietnam Vet, who was awarded a Purple Heart, inspired Walsh.

“I asked him, 'What can we do as a community to make sure that you and others who have served our country and sacrificed for our country feel appreciated and valued?'" Walsh said. "I was provided two fairly achievable recommendations that I think will send a positive signal to our veterans that we support them. And again, I think for all that they give for us, it's a small price to pay."

The city this year will become a Purple Heart City, and install Purple Heart City signage paying tribute to all who served in combat. It will also start a Hometown Heroes program, which allows family members to sponsor large banners on certain city streets that recognize an active duty person or veteran, either living or deceased.

The city will also move ahead with a minority veterans and Service members Memorial at Kirk Park.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.