TETON, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - A family project to honor local veterans is finally complete, after years of work from two brothers.
On Wednesday, Veteran's Day, people gathered at the Teton-Newdale Cemetery and braved the cold to honor our neighbors who served the United States.
“It shows the dedication of the people coming out in this bad weather,” said Gene Mace.
The Mace brothers, Gene and Quin, spent the better part of 2020 fundraising and planning the new Veteran's Memorial for the cemetery.
Gene and Quin have spent years laying flags on the headstones of the cemetery's veterans. It was that tradition that led to the idea for a memorial.
“We walked this cemetery multiple times to try to get every veteran, with lots of phone calls, checking obituaries and that kind of stuff,” Quin said.
It took two years for the brothers to identify every veteran in the cemetery. They ultimately found 271 veterans buried there, including their father and uncle, who both served in World War II.
“I think him and all the rest of the veterans are looking down and saying, ‘Hey, somebody just honored us,’ and that’s what this was all about,” Gene said.
The memorial consists of three stone slabs, listing the names of each veteran and the branch and war they served in. In front of the slabs is a stone memorial with "Here lies our patriotic heroes" engraved. Surrounding the slabs are the flags representing each branch of service, including the Space Force, and Old Glory.