MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — Hundreds of veterans and community members filled Warbird Park in Myrtle Beach on Thursday for the highly-anticipated World War II memorial dedication ceremony.

The city had been working on the project for more than a year. The $800,000 monument features laser-etched images from the Myrtle Beach Army Air Field.

11 World War II veterans sat in the front row at the ceremony. Former Myrtle Beach Mayor Bob Hirsch spoke about his experience fighting in the war.

“I can remember my kids when I come home, they told me what they had done with the mother during the day and they said that ‘I helped,'” he said. “So, that’s the way I feel about the guys here and myself, we all helped. Everybody helped out in World War II.”

The finishing touches of the memorial were placed earlier this week, including raising flags and placing a bronze statue of a PA-47 fighter plane.

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Savannah Denton joined News 13 in July 2023 as a reporter and producer. Savannah is from Atlanta, Georgia, and is a graduate of the University of Alabama. Follow Savannah on X, formerly Twitter, and read more of her work here