Visitors to Miramar National Cemetery will walk by a new statue erected Thursday.
The Liberation Moment, created by sculptor Richard Becker, was designed to honors the sacrifice of veterans captured during America's wars.
The American Ex-Prisoners of War (AXPOW) installed the monument to POWs near the entrance of the new cemetery off Nobel Drive.
Among those working to get the statue in place Thursday was former POW Ralph King.
“Being a POW is quite an experience for a military soldier especially a guy who is on the front lines,” said King. “When you’re a POW, you get no relief. You are fighting the enemy 24 hours a day.”
King was a WWII pilot when his plane was shot down. Lucky to get out alive, King suffered burns to his arm and his head.
King was held at Stalag Luft III, the camp involved in The Great Escape six months before his arrival.
The monument reminds him how fortunate we are to have a country where freedom is so important.
The statue was erected thanks to the work of Bob’s Crane and San Diego Machinery movers Kling said.
Based in Arlington, Texas, AXPOW assists surviving POWs, particularly those who are elderly and those who have medical problems.
AXPOW San Diego Chapter 1 plans to dedicate the monument Sept. 16 at 10:30 a.m.