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Rochester

Hilton Honors Its Veterans

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Rochester: Hilton Honors Its Veterans
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"We started this project in March of 2011."

We honor those who deserve to be honored.

"It's called the Veterans' Wall of Honor."

Those who sacrificed. Each face that hangs on the walls of Hilton Village Hall tells a story.

"Lot of stories. Lot of stories. Lot of great stories. Lot of sad stories," said Joe Lee.

Stories of local soldiers, killed in war. Stories of men and women who served, and fought for their country.

"I recognize their names and a lot of them are husbands or friends of mine," said Susan Cross.

"When I look around, I see all the other people that served," said Dale Polmateer. "It just shows you how many people gave part of their life to their country."

The wall was Joe Lee's idea.

"To have the respect the veterans need. We honor them every single day."

But for the Hilton mayor honoring those who served also has deeper meaning. His father's honored here.

And, Lee said, "This is Al Howe, my father-in-law right here."

"This is me, believe it or not. I haven't changed really... in my own mind anyway," Howe said.

The Navy veteran says the wall holds a special place in his heart, because it proves people just don't forget.

"I think it's real important. When this wall went up, we figured we'd have a few pictures up here, but now every time I walk in here, this wall means a lot."

When village leaders first got the idea to hang pictures of veterans at the village hall, the idea was to cover just one wall.

"There's around 300 pictures. We were hoping to get one wall done, and we're on the fifth wall," Lee said.

"That's what kind of amazes you. You look at all the people hanging on your walls now."

People who fulfilled their duty, and then lived their lives.

"You just never stop thinking about it. That's part of your life. Every day some instance will come up that takes you back there," Howe said.

People who never made it home.

"Gerald A Wilson. Killed in action, August 1968."

"I'm just very proud of all of these people, whether they're here or not, it's just a nice historical memory and I think this is a wonderful thing they put up in here," Cross said.

And people who will never forget what it means to serve, and sacrifice.

"I would hope that it keeps the sacrifices in their minds."

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