If you've ever traveled along US-31 heading "Up North" you may have passed Star Hill 2 without realizing it!

This unique grouping of white spruce trees were planted in a star shape, but this landmark is more than just something fun to look at for passersby-- it's actually a living memorial.

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Michigan based non-profit group The Heroes Operation recently shared its meaning on social media and I'll admit, I never knew the true meaning of Star Hill 2! Did you?

Here's what the group had to say,

as you are on your way to Silver Lake this weekend, if you are heading north on US-31, you will pass Star Hill 2. It is just past the New Era exit on the west side of the road. The “Duners” will tell you, it’s the land mark that tells you are almost to the dunes...

In reality, Star Hill 2 is a living memorial to honor those who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

Google Maps
Google Maps

According to Shoreline Media on April 6, 2002 nearly 20 volunteers from across Oceana County gathered on the hill to plant 80 white spruce trees to create a 120 foot tall star along US-31 between New Era and Shelby. Adds the news outlet,

the star emerging from the hillside is a very patriotic tribute to the firefighters, police officers, soldiers, sailors and airmen who gave their lives to protect others.

How to Find Star Hill 2

The next time you're heading Up North along US-31, look for the star on the west side of the road as you're approaching the Grand Road overpass. Click here for directions on Google Maps.

Google Maps
Google Maps

What About Star Hill 1?

The name certainly implies  there was an original Star Hill before this new memorial. Oceana County resident Janet Dodge says the original Star Hill can be found on,

Oceana Dr. South of Polk road where the guard rail is. The hill on the West side. Bigger hill, bigger star and now bigger trees. So it’s hard to see the landmark now.

Adds Doug Stafford,

Star [Hill] was on the original 31 created after WW 2, It burned. The new Star hill was built on the new highway and built in remembrance of all VETERANS

The next time you're making a trek Up North be sure to look to the west to see this homage to our fallen heroes. You can read more on Star Hills 1 and 2 here.

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