When honoring Memorial Day, it is important to remember those who fought for our freedoms. Throughout southeast Texas, you will find a number of memorials and monuments to observe and pay respects to those who risked their lives for us.
9/11 Memorial Garden
6088 Babe Zaharias Dr, Beaumont, TX 77705
This memorial is remembrance and in honor of all the people affected by the devasting attack on the United States of America on September 11, 2001 after four domestic flights were hijacked by terrorists and used as bombs to cause mass destruction. The eagles on the monument, signify America’s freedom and the pentagon shape represents the United Stated Government. Soil from the three crash sites is incorporated into the soil of the garden, making the memorial hallowed ground.
Firefighter Memorials at the Fire Museum of Texas
400 Walnut St, Beaumont, TX 77701
Situated near the pavilion at the Fire Museum of Texas, the two, bronze firefighter sculptures standing more than 6 feet tall on top of a pedestal to honor all past, present, and fallen firefighters in Texas as well as the memorial dedicated to the fallen New York firefighters from September 11, 2001.
Sabine Pass Battleground State Historical Park
6100 Dowling Rd, Port Arthur, TX 77641
On September 8, 1863, a Union fleet numbering some 20 vessels and about 4,000 men tried to invade Texas through Sabine Pass. Facing them all alone was Company F of the Texas Heavy Artillery. The Company consisted of 40 Irish dock workers lead by a young lieutenant, and a barkeep from Houston, named Dick Dowling. They had six cannons set up in unfinished earth works reinforced with railroad iron and ship’s timbers. When the smoke cleared, Dick Dowling and Company F had captured two Federal ships and 350 men. The remainder of the union fleet returned to New Orleans. The Federals were never able to penetrate the Texas interior during the war.
A statue of Dowling stands in the park, along with an interpretive pavilion illustrating the battle of Sabine Pass.
Temple of the Brave
1350 Pennsylvania Ave, Beaumont, TX 77701
Located in Pipkin Park, the Temple of the Brave was built by the Daughters of the American Revolution in memorial of those who died in World War 1. The date of the dedication - October 18, 1932 corresponds to the day 18 years earlier when American forces suffered some the heaviest casualties of the war - just a few days before the armistice of November 11, 1918 was signed. This temple also honors those who would serve in future wars.
Veterans Memorial Park
7626 Gulfway Dr, Port Arthur, TX 77642
Near the foot of the Veterans Memorial Bridge and Rainbow Bridge – contains 10,000 names of Golden Triangle service men and women who served in World War I and II, the Korean War, The Vietnam War, peacetime, Desert Storm, and with Merchant Marines in WWII.
The park also features a 50-foot Tower of Honor listing names of 930 of those killed or missing in action, in addition to statuary and military vehicles. Static displays include an F4-D Phantom Jet, an M60A3 tank, a UH-1 Huey Helicopter, an anchor from the Texaco 55 Mississippi (the last WWII Merchant Marine ship to be decommissioned), an assault landing craft and an oversize bronze Marine soldier statue.
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
5055 IH-10 Access Rd, Beaumont, TX 77705
To accompany the Veterans Memorial located at the Ben J. Rogers Visitor Center, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated in March 2021. This piece, built by artist Ron Petitt, was built to honor friends, loved ones, and all of those he served with in the Vietnam War.
The Vietnam War has been met with contention over the years but does not take away from lives lost during it. The monument depicts a soldier kneeling with his weapon, the helmet of a fallen soldier on the gun, gazing into the distance, honoring his fallen friends and comrades.