(WBIR - KNOXVILLE) A memorial honoring Gold Star families in Knoxville could soon become a reality.

The East Tennessee Military Affairs Council met on Thursday to discuss funding for the memorial.
Gold star families are those who have lost a loved one in combat.
Medal of Honor recipient Woody Williams said the group is making a lot of progress, and he couldn't be more thrilled.
He emphasized the importance of paying tribute to the families of fallen service men and women.

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His Hershel "Woody" Williams Medal of Honor Foundation is seeking to erect such monuments around the country. Several are now in place.

"Of all the monuments that we have, as an example in the District of Columbia, I'm told we have 1,100 monuments, memorials and so forth, but none of them pay tribute or honor the families who gave a loved one so we could stay free," Williams said.

The group hopes to break ground in September and then dedicate the memorial in the spring of next year.They say they've raised a lot of money, but still need some help getting to their $40,000 goal.

The first such monument was put in place at Donel C. Kinnard Memorial State Veterans Cemetery in Dunbar, W.V., in 2013, according to the foundation.

Since then monuments have been erected in Valley Forge, Pa., Lafayette, Ind., and Fairfield, Ohio.

Another was dedicated in May in Tampa, Fla.

You can learn more about the foundation's work here.