Veterans of the first Gulf War deserve a national memorial to honor their service and sacrifice during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm say U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Joe Donnelly (D-IN), who have joined together to introduce legislation that would create one in Washington, DC.
"There is no national memorial dedicated to the valor and sacrifices made by those members of our Armed Forces who honorably fought, and in some cases made the ultimate sacrifice, in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. We need to change that. This bill will clear the way for a memorial that will show a grateful nation's respect and appreciation for those who fought to defend freedom in the Gulf War," said Boozman.
Donnelly said, "Over 60,000 Hoosiers served in Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield, so I am proud to join my friend, Senator Boozman, in introducing bipartisan legislation that would authorize a national memorial to demonstrate our appreciation for their bravery and sacrifice. We owe all men and women who serve our nation a debt of gratitude, and those who serve in war should have their exceptional efforts recognized. The men and women who fought in the first Gulf War, especially those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, deserve to have their service memorialized."
Boozman and Donnelly's bill, the National Desert Storm and Desert Shield War Memorial Act, would authorize establishment of a National Desert Shield and Desert Storm War Memorial on federal lands within the District of Columbia.
No federal funds will be spent to build this memorial. All funds will be raised privately by the National Desert Storm War Memorial Association.
The association's President Scott C. Stump applauded the bill's introduction saying, "This bill is a significant step in commemorating the over 500,000 men and women who answered the call to serve during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, and in remembering the nearly 400 service members who made the ultimate sacrifice almost 23 years ago. The bill will ensure that Operations Desert Shield & Desert Storm, along with its veterans, will claim a proper and enduring place in U.S. and world history."
A companion bill has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representative by Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN).