SANTA MARIA, Calif. -

Santa Maria unveiled a plaque and Evergreen Pear Tree for Army Specialist Kenneth Alvarez this morning.

A ceremony was held at the Freedom Monument Veterans Memorial in front of the Abel Maldonaldo Youth Center in Santa Maria.

The City says this is their first time dedicating a living memorial.

It symbolizes that Alvarez' story will live, though he is no longer with us. 

Alvarez died in August while fighting the war in Afghanistan.

His unit was attacked by insurgents with an Improvised Explosive Device.

Alvarez was a Santa Maria native.  

He is survived by his wife and child.