Vets banners effort resumes, with support from Rotary Club

Scott Swanson

Four years into the Hero Banner project, which has resulted in the hanging of dozens of banners portraying local veterans on power poles along Highway 20 in Sweet Home, the founders are getting help.

Jim and Lisa Gourley started the project in 2017, working with the Community Health Committee to offer street banners to honor those who are serving or have served in the military and police officers and firefighters who have fallen in the line of duty.

“We’ve been working on it for four years,” Jim Gourley said last week. “I believe we have 88 at last count.”

The goal is to have 100 banners hung by the end of this year, he said.

The Sweet Home Rotary Club, of which the Gourleys are members, has stepped up to manage the project, and Rotary member Scott Snedeker has volunteered to co-chair this year’s effort said Gourley, who will be the other co-chair.

“It’s hard for Lisa and I to turn it over to somebody else because it’s very personal,” Gourley said. “But it needs to continue to flourish in the future.”

People may apply to have a banner made to honor Sweet Home veterans and their service to the United States of America. The cost is $100, which covers the banners and hardware necessary to hang them. The banners are printed on heavy plastic material designed to withstand the weather and fast-moving traffic on Highway 20. They will hang from Memorial Day to Veterans Day.

Photos must be submitted with applications. Each banner will bear a photo of the veteran.

Each banner will be marked with a color-coded star and additional information about veterans. A white star will signal a veteran. A gold star will denote a veteran killed in action. A blue star will show a person serving on active duty.

Additional markings will show those who were prisoners of war, missing in action and more information.

For more information, contact Gourley at [email protected] or (541) 206-9544.