Chattanooga honors veterans, including fallen five service men
Under a clear blue sky, a Chattanooga utility worker hangs the last American flag along Veterans Bridge.
Family and friends of local veterans honored by these flags look on, including those of USMC Staff Sgt. David Wyatt. A flag will permanently fly in his memory along with the other servicemen killed on July 16th.
For Harriet Chipley, it's a gesture that lies close to her heart. One of the 30 flags honor her late husband, Major William Chipley, who served as a USMC pilot in World War II and the Korean War.
Major Chipley shared his love to fly with his passion to play football, playing professionally for the Boston Yanks and the New York Bulldogs.
"He played for them for three years and was called back in for the Korean War and flew once again as a Marine pilot," she said.
These stars and stripes will wave free looking over the city Major Chipley loved.
Donors from throughout the community allow the American flags to fly year-round through the Chattanooga's Veterans Flag Initiative.
For the last decade, the American flags were supplied by an anonymous donor that generously funded the replacement of the flags each year. That donation totaled about $40,000.
The Transportation Department was notified in 2013 that the anonymous donor could no longer continue to provide those funds.
To fill that void, the city of Chattanooga announced the Veterans Bridge Flag Initiative, to keep our Veterans Bridge decorated with American flags.
Any group or individual can honor a service man or woman by donating the cost of a flag.
Each flag is $75 and will fly on a numbered pole on the Veterans Bridge from May until after Veterans Day in November.
Honorees will receive a proclamation recognizing their service to the country and proclaiming the pole number from which their flag flies. The flags will be offered to the donors at the end of each season.