Veterans group donates $7,600 to Elyria for Hometown Heroes banners
The donation will make purchasing banners more affordable for families wishing to have one of their loved ones honored, bringing the price down to $37 per banner as opposed to $160.
“Thank you to the Elyria Council of Veterans for your support of the city, not only with today but what you do for our city every day, and it means a lot and thank you for your service to our country,” Whitfield said.
The mayor added he has enjoyed working with Elyria veterans on various projects, but the banner project has been quite exciting.
“We just appreciate you and your leadership and it's exciting to be able to honor those who have served such as yourself,” the mayor said.
Each banner recognizes a specific service person and will include their name, branch of service and photo. The 24-by-48-inch banners are displayed along Middle Avenue.
David K. Root led the fundraising committee for the project and said the process was fun contacting their members and related organizations.
“They jumped right in with checks and said we’ll help and this is the outcome. It turned out well. We got it down where it's affordable for a veteran to be able to get a banner,” Root said.
Last year, the Elyria Veterans Council was able to help get partial refunds for some who participated in the Hometown Heroes program, but for 2023 getting the price down to $37 makes it much more affordable for families to give recognition to an Elyria veteran.
“Great program and I’m glad the city put it together so we can help in it,” Root said.
The idea for the program came from Elyria middle school student Jace Walters, who initially approached the city about it, providing the initial spark to move forward with city officials identifying 56 banner locations.
Whitfield said Jace's enthusiasm was an example for all Elyrians, especially young Elyrians, to follow.
“We have to thank a middle school student, Jace, for his leadership and bringing this idea to the city. We took the feedback from him and the vision he had for the city and here we are celebrating now and we got community partners really honoring our veterans,” Whitfield said.
Whitfield said Jace sets an example to other young people that you can lead today.
To apply for the banner program, visit cityofelyria.org/hometownhero.
Applications will require the submission of a high quality photo: printed photographs must be at least 8 inches by 10 inches or a digital photo at least 300 dpi high-resolution photos in a JPEG, TIF or PNG file format as (RGB or CMYK) that would print clearly at an 8-by-10 size.
Applicants are asked not to enlarge existing images electronically as it reduces the image quality. Web images or cellphone shots of the original print are not acceptable. Images saved in any document other than JPEG, TIF or PNG will not be usable.
Banners can honor any current or former member of the military with ties to Elyria.