If you're driving on Interstate 79 or on the Gateway Connector in Fairmont anytime soon, you might notice a brand new token of appreciation for our country, which was unveiled on Saturday for the very first time.
The Korean War Memorial continues to be a work in progress in Fairmont, but on Flag Day, officials unveiled a fitting addition to the memorial: the Patriot Flag.
"That's the reason why it's so tall at 38 meters, or 125 feet. It's related to the Korean War, the 38th parallel," said Vietnam veteran Rick Hardman, who designed the flag.
Those aren't the only impressive numbers the "Patriot Flag" has to offer. It measures 30 by 60 feet long, according to Hardman, who helped to reveal the flag on Saturday, waving high over the Gateway Connector and Interstate 79.
"I was overwhelmed by the view, even though it's slightly noisy by the road, but with the view by I-79," said Hardman.
"I think it's just a wonderful place to have a flag, just let everybody passing by know that were military strength around here," said veteran Richard Boore.
Hardman also decided to have crews paint the flagpole black for one particular reason.
"The flagpole will disappear at night, and it will look like the flag will be flying by itself," said Hardman.
"Being a veteran myself, anytime we do these kind of presentations, if it doesn't bring tears to your eyes, nothing will," said Ron Straight, mayor of Fairmont.
But there is one aspect that isn't as promising as the flag itself. While Hardman thanked numerous organizations for their contributions, a lack of overall funding for the Korean War Memorial has delayed the project, prompting County Commissioner Butch Tennant and other officials to ask the public for its help.
"Four years is long enough. I know monies are tight, but hopefully we can get some public donations and stuff to help finish it," said Straight.
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