ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A dedication of a new memorial took place in Rockford on Sunday, despite the rain.

The “Purple Heart Memorial” is at Midway Village Museum’s LZ Peace Memorial, 6595 Guilford Rd. It honors men and women from the Rockford area who have served in the military.

The memorial has been in the works since 2019, and a groundbreaking took place a few weeks ago. Artist Susan Burton is honored to create the piece.

“As an artist, you really want your work to represent something that is meaningful, and this is so meaningful I can’t express enough,” Burton said. “And I feel like the work has been brought to me by the divine and I’m honored to do this.”

The Purple Heart is the oldest medal in the military. It is awarded to servicemen who have been wounded or killed. The memorial was dedicated on Purple Heart Day, August 7.