Flags for Heroes in Williamstown

WILLIAMSTOWN — Williamstown Lions Club has teamed up with the community to bring the patriotic fundraiser “Flags for Heroes” to Williamstown for the second year in a row.

“We put out these flags to honor every hero, veterans, preachers, teachers and anyone else you consider a personal hero,” said Jay Houser, president of the Lions Club and 32-year veteran of the West Virginia Army National Guard.

This year’s ceremony was held on Saturday and the key speaker was Williamstown Police Chief Shawn Graham.

Graham shared the recent story of Koso Tsiboe, from Galloway, Ohio, who pulled a patrol officer out of a burning vehicle and was shot in the leg during the process of saving the officer because a bullet in the vehicle became too hot and exploded.

He talked about the local volunteer firefighters who are not paid, but still serve their community, running into burning buildings and putting out the fires.

“Heroes are around us every day,” he said.

Graham ended his speech with a quote from Luis Alvarez, a New York City Detective, who passed away Saturday morning, that he felt the veterans, officers and other local heroes in attendance could relate to.

“I am no one special I just did what all the other guys did,” quoted Graham.

Alvarez is known for recently speaking with Congress for an extension of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

So far there are 150 flags, and more are being added each day for the next week, according to Houser. The flags will remain on display through July 7.

Houser said all funds raised are going towards a handicap swing to be added to the playground at Tomlinson Park.

“So far we have raised a little over $7,000 to go toward the new equipment,” he said.

Madeline Scarborough can be contacted at mscarborough@newsandsentinel.com