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Paducah Plaza to Feature ‘Global War on Terrorism’ Memorial

Nathan Torian

A memorial to recognize local sacrifices made in the effort to end the Global War on Terrorism will be placed in Paducah.

Just two months after Marine Master Sgt. Aaron Torian lost his life in 2014 while serving in Afghanistan, his brother Nathan Torian started a fund in his honor.

Torian said he and his brother both had dreams of being in the military, but it was Aaron who pursued it into a career.

Credit Nathan Torian

“It is what he loved to do, I love being a Firefighter, he loved being a Marine. It’s what he was born to do.” Torian said.

Torian also lost a friend to the War on Terror, Marine Sgt. Christopher Heflin of Reidland, who was killed while serving in Iraq in 2004.

After three years of garnering support with the help from the City of Paducah and the McCracken County government and donations from a Go Fund Me campaign, Torian met a $65 thousand dollar goal.

Both the City of Paducah and McCracken County donated $15k to the campaign.

Local designer J. Patrick Kerr constructed the approx. 10ft statue of the Twin Towers to be placed in the Dolly McNutt Plaza along side the WWII, Korean War and Vietnam War Memorials.

“The Twin Towers being struck is literally when the Global War on Terror started so that is why we went with that design.” Torian said.

Former Paducah Fire Chief and WWII veteran Leon Dodge “was a big driving force behind this, until he became sick and passed away at 92.” Torian said.

A private account will cover future maintenance. Torian said fundraisers will be held twice a year to keep the fund active.

The date for the statue unveiling has not yet been determined.


Nicole Erwin is a Murray native and started working at WKMS during her time at Murray State University as a Psychology undergraduate student. Nicole left her job as a PTL dispatcher to join the newsroom after she was hired by former News Director Bryan Bartlett. Since, Nicole has completed a Masters in Sustainable Development from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia where she lived for 2 1/2 years.
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