Founded in 2004, the Field of Heroes is a community volunteer project. The materials required for its production are all donated. That includes everything from the wood, paint, lamination of the plaques, lights, portable toilets, to the metal connectors, signs and all additional needs.
As the only Memorial Day tribute of it's kind in the nation, the Field of Heroes is quite unique. It first began to memorialize the U.S. Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan.
A small cross, the accepted worldwide casualty symbol, is put up for each soldier’s death. Each cross is painted white. On the cross arm is placed a Name Tag. On each Name Tag there is the Casualty Number, Name and Rank. The white crosses are then set in the ground, properly spaced, as in Arlington National Cemetery.
To emphasize the loss of our soldiers from the State of Idaho, all those casualties were given another white cross, doubling the size of the original one. On those nine larger crosses a Plaque was put on the cross arm. On each Plaque there is the Casualty Number, Name, Rank, Age, Branch of Service, Unit, Cause of Death, Location and Hometown. Family members and friends decorated those crosses with flowers, mementos and notes.
What is amazing are all the volunteers who come out to make the crosses and then put them up with exact precision. These include old veterans, Boy Scouts, Veteran Bikers and kids out of school. Also, professionals who take time from their workday to come out, housewives and just regular patriotic citizens who take the time and wish this completed correctly. Other volunteers include the local law enforcement and members of our local National Guard and Reserve Units, some of who have already served in Iraq. They wish to see this done, knowing that they can voluntarily contribute. They volunteer to come out in all kinds of weather to make the tribute perfect.
Yellow Ribbon Campaign of Idaho, Field of Heroes 2005
Field of Heroes 2005
Vietnam Veteran Gary Richardson places a cross in 2004