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Ceremony marks completion of Virginia War Memorial expansion project

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Posted at 8:39 PM, Feb 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-29 22:12:29-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- The Virginia War Memorial celebrated the completion of a nearly two-and-a-half-year expansion Saturday.

A dedication marked the expanded Shrine of Memory - Global War on Terrorism and Beyond, which honors the 175 Virginians killed in the War on Terror.

"It's often said that you die two deaths,” veteran John Hekman explained. “One death is when you die, and the second is when your name is said for the last time. And what we want to make sure happens is the names inscribed here will not ever, ever be said again to our children or grandchildren."

The event also featured the grand opening for the C. Kenneth Wright Pavilion, which was another part of the expansion. It houses an exhibit and lecture spaces, a learning center, the Medal of Honor Gallery and Veterans Art Gallery.

The latter holds its opening reception Thursday.

The event also commemorated 64 years since the memorial opened on Feb. 29, 1956.