City of Niles donates new flagpolePublished 8:00am Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Even towering overhead 90 feet in the air, those in attendance Monday would tell you the stars and stripes of the American Flag looked impressive whipping back and forth in the brisk November wind.
The City of Niles dedicated its newly repurposed flagpole and the 15-foot-by-25-foot version of Old Glory with a short ceremony at the North Second Street building, a service that included a prayer and a salute by the American Legion Post 26 Honor Guard.
“We are excited to be able to repurpose an existing flagpole from the Kawneer building and tie it all together here at the new city building,” Mayor Mike McCauslin said afterwards. “To be able to dedicate it on Veterans Day is really special. It means an awful lot to have our veterans here and it means an awful lot to display the flag of our country.”
The Rev. Cathi Huvaere, pastor of Wesley United Methodist Church, offered a blessing and invocation.
“… May it continue to call us to justice and peace,” she said, reminding everyone that the flag — and what it stands for — is bigger than any individual.
The plummeting temperatures and ice-cold raindrops did little to dampen the enthusiasm and support of the few dozen city employees gathered there.
Odie Stewart, a member of the Legion’s Honor Guard and a board member of the Support our Troops Festival in Baroda, said it meant a lot to see that support.
“As you look around, these are city (employees.) They are very aware of what veterans do,” Stewart said of the ceremony. “This means a lot to us. It gives us initiative to go forward and do other things for the community. And, it is just something that needs to be done.”
The Legion also performed ceremonies at the Veterans Park and the YMCA in Niles.
City manager Ric Huff thanked everyone for supporting the months-long project that, he said, will have an impact for decades to come.
“Hopefully it will fly for another 50 or 75 years.”