Warsaw, Ind. A ceremony honoring Kosciusko County’s World War II veterans opened Friday night with the unveiling of a statue inspired by one of the war’s most famous photographs.
The statue titled “Unconditional Surrender” is a life-size version of the famous “Kissing Sailor” photo snapped at the conclusion of WWII.
“Some of us who are children of those veterans,” said Ken Lock, Director of the Greater Warsaw Ministerial Association. “So that kiss is why some of us are here, too.”
There are about 85 veterans of WWII still living in Kosciusko County, and about 60 came out for the ceremony commemorating the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.
Each veteran received a patch for the anniversary and a medal for courage and honor.
“I think there’s a special place here for our veterans,” Lock said. “They are the ones who came back after the war and really helped to build this community for what we have today, so we just have a special place in our hearts for all of these guys.”
The statue is one of 16 life-size bronze sculptures by American sculptor Seward Johnson.
The Walk-n-Wander collection will be scattered throughout downtown Warsaw until Sept. 28.