Honoring Chattanooga's Fallen Five on Memorial Day - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Honoring Chattanooga's Fallen Five on Memorial Day

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

A volunteer artist is working on this Memorial Day to complete the mural honoring Chattanooga's Fallen Five.

"Carson Holmquist, Randall Smith, Tommy Sullivan, Skip Wells, and David Wyatt. Those are the five things you need to remember about that day," said Artist Kevin Bate.

Their five faces will forever be remembered in Chattanooga. But just as the mural is to honor the lives lost, it's also for the families they left behind.

"You know the whole reason I started this was for Carson Holmquist's son Wyatt, I had seen a picture of him holding up that sign that said 'we've waited 244 days for this," Bate said.

Bate said that picture is a big reason he took on this project. It shows Sgt. Carson Holmquist's wife and young son Wyatt welcoming him home after his last deployment.

"That one sign just destroyed me, it was so sad for me. I've got a son about Wyatt Holmquist's age," Bate said.

Bate hopes the widows, parents, and children of the Fallen Five know there's always a place for them in Chattanooga and their family's sacrifice will always be remembered.

"I wanted to make sure there was something here that would remind everybody, but especially Wyatt Holmquist, anytime he came through here so he'd remember his dad and see him as a larger than life figure, because I think he is."

On this first Memorial Day without them, Bate asked for a flag to fly while he finishes the painting.

"I kind of threw a request out on Facebook just to see if anyone had like a big flag that I could hang on the scaffolding," he said.

What was brought to the mural site was more than he could have ever imagined.
    
A flag that has waved overseas and at home.

"A flag that had flown over Iraq and at the Capital," Bate said.
    
And on this Memorial Day, it's flying over the Fallen Five.

"These are men who put on their uniform and they were working for us, I think that every bit of honor is due to them," Bate said.

With one portrait still left to be finished, Bate said the Fallen Five mural will be completed by July 16th, one year after the shootings.

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