In honoring Jewish military veterans with a stone monument at Great Lakes National Cemetery in Holly Township, local vets were sending a message.
"Jewish people have served in every war this country has fought," Gerald Order, 65, commander of the Department of Michigan Jewish War Veterans, said at the unveiling Sunday.
Organizer Stanley Eisenberg of Rose Township -- a 75-year-old veteran of the Coast Guard who served during the Korean War -- said the monument cost about $1,800 and was dedicated by the state's Jewish War Veterans and Ladies Auxiliary.
The monument stands knee-high along a paved path with other memorials near a quiet, tree-lined waterfront.
"It's a place where we can come in prayer and thank God for everything He has given us, everything we have worked for, everything we have sacrificed our life for," said Bernard Feldman, 77, of Southfield, a Korean War veteran who served in the Navy on the USS Smalley.
Officials at the dedication didn't know how many Jewish military veterans there are in Michigan or across the country. But a document on the National Museum of American Jewish Military History's Web site, published in 2004, says nearly 1 million had served in the armed services during the 20th Century.
About 60 people attended Sunday's dedication, including Rabbi Karen Companez of Temple Beth El in Flint.
"We come together to honor the memories of those who are no longer with us," Companez said.
"We come together to offer support for one another."
Detroit Free Press