While the communities of Cumberland County honor veterans this month, visitors to the area are eager to learn more about the many historic sites and military monuments that honor some of our war heroes. The Fayetteville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau (FACVB) offers the Patriots, Past & Present Trail as an online guide for visiting history hounds. The 29 places on this handy driving trail take about a half-day to visit. Here, we highlight just a few of those sites, all of which commemorate our local heroes and military legends.
Fifer’s Grave, Downtown Fayetteville
Visit the burial site of Isaac Hammond to pay your respects to this Revolutionary War soldier. Hammond was the first fifer in the Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry (F.I.L.I.) and served for 30 years. His grave serves as a reminder of this county’s extensive history of military service.
Freedom Memorial Park, Downtown Fayetteville
Take the time to stop at this park while downtown and pay homage to those Cumberland County veterans who were killed in action. The monuments on site commemorate these men and women who served in World War I, World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
Iron Mike Statues, Downtown Fayetteville & Fort Bragg
Marvel at an impressive 16-foot statue that represents the Airborne trooper. The original Iron Mike was “stationed” at Fort Bragg from 1961 to 1979, at which point it was taken down. It was later replaced with a bronze replica statue. The original one, having been refurbished, now stands guard in front of the Airborne and Special Operations Museum downtown.
JFK Hall of Heroes, Fort Bragg
Pay your respects to some special heroes while on Fort Bragg. The Hall of Heroes honors specifically Medal of Honor recipients from the Special Forces. The JFK Memorial Chapel and JFK Special Warfare Museum are also well worth a visit.
Colonel Arthur “Bull” Simons Statue, Fort Bragg
Celebrate the life of yet another Special Forces hero. Colonel Simons is remembered for being the overall ground commander of the Son Tay Raid in 1970, as well as for rescuing American businessmen who had been kidnapped during the Iranian Revolution. His story is one of many fascinating history lessons to be learned in this area.
A short video preview of the Patriots, Past & Present Trail may be viewed below. Several other fascinating driving trails are available on the FACVB’s website, offering visitors handy guides to the best of Cumberland County. To keep track of the many events happening year-round in the greater Fayetteville area, check out the FACVB’s Calendar of Events.