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Updated Dyess Memorial Park opens in Texas, honors military

July 20, 2019
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Jessica Vallejo remembers her grandfather John Brace as she holds her daughters Victoria and Abigail, and son Kristopher, Friday July 19, 2019 in Abilene, Texas. Vallejo came from Waco to the dedication of the Dyess Memorial Park extension with her husband Jose, her grandmother Martha, and other members of her family to honor her grandfather who died in a C-130 accident Oct. 12, 1966 in Guthrie with four other crewmen. (Ronald W. Erdrich /The Abilene Reporter-News via AP)
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Jessica Vallejo remembers her grandfather John Brace as she holds her daughters Victoria and Abigail, and son Kristopher, Friday July 19, 2019 in Abilene, Texas. Vallejo came from Waco to the dedication of the Dyess Memorial Park extension with her husband Jose, her grandmother Martha, and other members of her family to honor her grandfather who died in a C-130 accident Oct. 12, 1966 in Guthrie with four other crewmen. (Ronald W. Erdrich /The Abilene Reporter-News via AP)

ABILENE, Texas (AP) — A West Texas park dedicated to Dyess Air Force Base personnel who died in crashes or other service to their country has been expanded to include memorial plaques.

Ceremonies were held Friday in Abilene at updated Dyess Memorial Park, which was a project of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce Military Affairs Committee.

The site previously featured a flagpole, a covered area and bricks. The expanded park now recognizes the 79 military personnel who’ve given their lives since what originally was known as Abilene Air Force Base opened in 1956.

The design involves a sundial memorial , allowing the sun to enter and mark precise points on the grounds and shine on various monuments.

Gen. Maryanne Miller, commander of the Air Force Mobility Command, said Friday was about sacrifices and thanksgiving.

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