The Citadel unveils new memorial honoring lives of graduates who died in action

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The Citadel's graduating class of 1967 will always have a special history.

"It was a Vietnam War-era class, and we lost 10 of our classmates in that war," said Mike Steele, who graduated from The Citadel in 1967.

On Friday, the Class of '67 honored those 10 classmates, along with more than 700 other graduates from The Citadel who have died defending our country.

They did that with a new monument on campus.

"This is our 50th reunion," said Steele. "We've spent 50 years trying to honor their presence, and trying to figure out something that would be beneficial to the college for our 50th reunion gift."

President of the Citadel, John Rosa, says the class certainly accomplished that goal.

"We've all got friends and classmates and comrades on that wall someplace," said Rosa. "To have a tribute finally after all these years to them is really a special, special day for us."

Many who attended Friday's ceremony came to support the memory of their friends or classmates, but a few others came to honor the lives of fallen family members.

"He was killed as a result of injuries that occurred in Ramadi February the 21st, 2006," said Lula Lamb-Fitzgerald, the step-mother of a graduate listed on the memorial.

Seeing her stepson's name on that wall brought Lamb-Fitzgerald a mix of emotions. But one feeling stood out above the rest.

"Most definitely I'm proud of him," said Lamb-Fitzgerald.

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