A sculpture depicting a US soldier riding horseback during the invasion of Afghanistan was unveiled near its new home on Friday near One World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan.

The 16-foot-tall bronze statue, titled "De Opresso Liber," depicts a Special Operations soldier in Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks, and commemorates the first time US troops used horses in combat since 1942.

Sculptor Douwe Blumberg told DNAinfo:

I heard story after story after story of courage and heroism, professionalism, dedication and sacrifice. How do you adequately say thank you when you have been freely given a gift of such great value that costs so much, that you know never in your lifetime can you repay it? I think the answer to that question for me is you say thank you as best as you can.

Located in front of the World Trade Center PATH station, the statue first debuted in 2011 during a parade down Fifth Avenue. After moving several times, it will stay at its new home.

A ceremony on Friday thanked donors who raised $750,000 from private citizens who made the installation possible.

Check out some photos from the event, and then watch an interview with Doug Stanton, author of "Horse Soldiers: The Extraordinary Story of a Band of US Soldiers Who Rode to Victory in Afghanistan."

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  • The top floors of the World Trade Center tower disappear into a fog as Port Authority police officer Joe O'Leary prepares to carry the flag in a ceremony to rededicate the "Horse Soldier" statue on Friday, Oct. 19, 2012 in New York. Forecasters call for showers with the chance of some thunder this evening. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • Special operations soldiers listen during a ceremony to rededicate the "Horse Soldier" statue near the World Trade Center Memorial site on Friday, Oct. 19, 2012 in New York. The 16-foot-tall sculpture of a Special Operations soldier on horseback is a memorial to the troops who led the American invasion of Afghanistan in response to the Sept. 11 attacks on the trade center and the Pentagon. Known as "De Oppresso Liber," a motto of the Army Special Forces, the statue will have a temporary home near the PATH station entrance on Vesey Street before taking permanent residence in nearby Zuccotti Park. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • A trumpeter with the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey police band plays "Taps," during a ceremony to rededicate the "Horse Soldier" statue near the World Trade Center Memorial site on Friday, Oct. 19, 2012 in New York. The 16-foot-tall sculpture of a Special Operations soldier on horseback is a memorial to the troops who led the American invasion of Afghanistan in response to the Sept. 11 attacks on the trade center and the Pentagon. Known as "De Oppresso Liber," a motto of the Army Special Forces, the statue will have a temporary home near the PATH station entrance on Vesey Street before taking permanent residence in nearby Zuccotti Park. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • The "Horse Soldier" statue is unveiled during a rededication ceremony near the World Trade Center Memorial site on Friday, Oct. 19, 2012 in New York. The 16-foot-tall sculpture of a Special Operations soldier on horseback is a memorial to the troops who led the American invasion of Afghanistan in response to the Sept. 11 attacks on the trade center and the Pentagon. Known as “De Oppresso Liber,” a motto of the Army Special Forces, the statue will have a temporary home near the PATH station entrance on Vesey Street before taking permanent residence in nearby Zuccotti Park. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)