Buffalo Soldiers to get sculpture in Tombstone

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TOMBSTONE, Ariz. -- Buffalo Soldiers took over Allen Street in Tombstone this weekend.  It was all part of the third annual salute to the African-American soldiers who helped settle the southwest.

Plans are in the works for a permanent memorial.

Aaron Plump and Doug Woodard represent the 10th Calvary Troop B foundation. Back in the late 1800s this troop was one of four African-American army units, widely known by the nickname "Buffalo Soldiers."

Troop B was based in what is now Southern Arizona.

"Well in this area, if it wasn't for the Buffalo Soldiers there probably wouldn't have been a tombstone. Because the Buffalo Soldiers represent all the law enforcement here," said Buffalo Soldier Doug Woodward.

These days, Woodard and Plump have those duties in tombstone and they may be two of the most popular guys in town.

They' re the driving force behind this week's salute to the Buffalo Soldiers.

"We started 3 years ago with 12 people and every year it has gotten bigger, so this weekend we expect to have a couple thousand guys from all over the country," said Buffalo Soldier Aaron Plump.

This year's celebration is extra special because the foundation unveiled a clay model of a sculpture they plan to put up in the 'town too tough to die.'

"And it was just an idea 3 years ago we started talking about it, we started with a poster and once the poster got going, then we decided hey lets go big so the statue are what are dream are," said Woodward.

The proposed finished product will be two eight foot tall bronze sculptures. Created by local artist Tim Trask.

"The Buffalo Soldiers were a big part of the story of the settling of the west and should be remembered and should have a good sculpture here where they were probably scarified the most," said Trask.

All three men are happy to be part of the project and can't wait for the unveiling of the bronze sculpture.

"It's an honor to do it and I'm really glad to be a part of it.  This will look like a Buffalo Soldier and so I'm really proud to be part of this project," said Trask.

If you want more information on the Buffalo Soldiers sculpture visit http://10thcavtroopb.org.