Port Angeles woman hand delivers sympathy banners after Chattano - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Port Angeles woman hand delivers sympathy banners after Chattanooga shootings

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Chattanooga and Port Angeles started out as rivals, each voting to name their city as the "Best Town Ever." But once the people of Port Angeles heard of the tragedy across the country, they knew this city needed its love and support.

"When the shootings happened, it was devastating to us, you know we felt like it was our friends, it had happened to friends of ours."

Wanting to help, the people in Port Angeles all met at their City Hall to sign a banner to send to Chattanooga.

But just one banner wasn't enough.

"They put out the banner, filled up immediately, so we put out another banner, filled up immediately," said Leslie Robertson of Port Angeles.

Now with 20 banners, Leslie Robertson decided to hand deliver the heartfelt messages and take the opportunity to see the city she'd only heard about in competition. 

"I really hope that it does express how much we really are behind you in this, and we are so sorry for what happened," Robertson said.

One of the first stops during Robertson's visit was to the Chattanooga National Cemetery to pay respects to the fallen servicemen buried there.

At the grave site, Robertson met Navy Petty Officer Second Class Randall Smith's father, standing at his son's grave. 

She told him of her journey. 

"Does it help? Does it offer comfort?" Robertson asked him, "And he said absolutely it helps, it gives us comfort and it's the right thing to do. That moment made it all so worth it to me."

Robertson visited both memorials where the shootings happened.

"It was one of the most emotional things I have ever experienced in my life," she said.

And lastly, Robertson met Mayor Andy Berke at city hall to present the banners from her hometown.

Robertson says it's clear that Chattanooga strong is more than motto, its a culture. And one that deserves the title of "Best Town Ever."

"Having been here and seen the people, and met the city, just kudos to you, you deserved it," Robertson said.

The Mayor's office says the banners will be framed, and starting on Monday, they will be at the downtown public library on display on the 4th floor. 

The banners will be on display at the downtown library for at least a week while the city works on a more permanent plan for the messages from Port Angeles.

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