PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — The ‘Fallen Heroes’ program that names highway bridges for South Dakotans who died while in the armed forces continues to have a strong interest.

The latest 12 received approval from the South Dakota Transportation Commission last week. One died in World War II, three in Korea, five in Vietnam and three in Afghanistan and Iraq.

They were chosen from a list of 70 whose families and friends had applied to honor their loved ones.

A committee from three state departments — Military, Veterans Affairs and Transportation — makes the recommendations.

“Some very, very great individuals here we’re going to recognize,” DVA’s Audry Ricketts said.

She explained that the committee tries to represent all corners of South Dakota in the recommendations each April. Applications stay on file.

“This is really important,” commissioner Mike Vehle of Mitchell said. He recalled attending the ceremony for one. “It was quite an emotional deal,” he said. “These are really moving experiences.”

The ceremonies take place between Memorial Day and Veterans Day. The dates for each of this year’s groups will now be set.

To view the lists of South Dakota casualties by county, click here.

“It’s important to take the time to understand these stories,” commission chair Jafar Karim of Rapid City said.

In other action, the commission approved providing $2.8 million to the state Game, Fish and Parks Department to use on paving projects and accepted bids from contractors for eight road projects in Brookings, Codington, Deuel, Hamlin, Kingsbury, Butte, Lawrence, Meade, Pennington, Campbell, Corson, Dewey, McPherson, Walworth, Bon Homme, Clay, Hutchinson, Turner, Union, Yankton, Jackson, Lincoln, McCook and Minnehaha counties.