GARBER, Okla. — The town of Garber is hosting a ceremony at 1 p.m. Friday on Main Street, to recognize its new status as a Purple Heart City.
"It lets the citizens know, not just the veterans, that the town is a proud supporter of our veterans," J.D. Ennis said.
An Enid resident and board president for Wounded Veterans of Oklahoma, Ennis said the designation is a great way to show rural veterans in and around Garber that they have not been forgotten. It sends a message to others, too.
Ennis worked with the Military Order of the Purple Heart to make his hometown an officially recognized Purple Heart City. The order also has delivered new signage to Garber, which will be installed at the north and south entrances to town, proclaiming its support to passersby.
Though Ennis now lives in Enid, he helps put on monthly veteran appreciation dinners in Garber, as part of his work with Wounded Veterans of Oklahoma. An average of 25 show up for each, he said, vets from Korea, Vietnam and various campaigns in the Middle East. Even one who served in World War II attends.
The attention veterans receive seems to ebb and flow, he said. He's hopeful Garber's status will send a message they are in the thoughts of local residents.
There's no shortage of veterans in Enid either, he said, adding that Wounded Veterans of Oklahoma "would love to get Enid designated as a Purple Heart City as well."