STUART, Fla. - Martin County and the City of Stuart have become a Purple Heart city and county.
Thanks to the hard work of a local 13-year-old boy scout, county and city leaders are looking forward to the opportunity to display that their areas are veteran friendly and welcoming.
13-year-old Nicholas Cocoves created the Purple Heart Memorial in Stuart as part of his project to become an Eagle Scout.
He painted a donated bench, raised money for a flag pole, and finished the memorial with a dedication plaque.
“I feel pretty good about myself,” Cocoves said as he raised the flag and his plaque was unveiled Wednesday.
Cocoves says he knew his project would help Stuart and Martin County become Purple Heart Communities. “I know that the county and the city of Stuart have been trying to become a Purple Heart County and a Purple Heart City, so I thought this would tie in really well,” Cocoves said.
Both the city and the county will be posting signs to promote that they are Purple Heart communities.
Wednesday, a local veteran was also awarded the Purple Heart during the unveiling ceremony.
Major Charles Winn served in the U.S Army and was wounded in the Korean War. His son, Colonel Chuck Winn presented his father with the award.
“When you look around the world and look at what’s happening with all the unrest, I think it’s more important than ever that we thank our veterans,” said U.S Congressman, Patrick Murphy.
Cocoves hopes his project will be meaningful to veterans like Winn and any future recipients of the Purple Heart.
“I hope it can be a good way to honor (veterans). I hope it can be here for as long as I live,” Cocoves said.