ABILENE, Texas -

Big Country veterans were honored in a special ceremony Saturday morning.

A purple heart monument was dedicated to Abilene's Texas State Veteran's Cemetery along "Memorial Path."

Veteran Jimmy Defoor said the ceremony was very close to his heart.

"I lost a brother in Vietnam so this is a very special dedication and this is a monument that's going to be here for the ages honoring those who shed their blood and even gave their lives for this country," Defoor said.

Defoor lost his brother in 1970.

"While I may mourn [his passing], I celebrate because he was doing what he wanted to do," Defoor said.  "He volunteered and he wanted to be there. He wanted to serve his country."

Mike Hernandez is part of the group that helped raise money for the monument. It cost about $1,700.00. The funding came mainly from donations and took about a year and half to raise. Hernandez is also a purple heart recipient.

"You really don't want to earn a purple heart while in combat but if you do it's because you have shed blood for your country," Hernandez said.

Those at the ceremony said the monument will serve as a constant reminder of our veterans and those who are fallen, but not forgotten.