Medina adds nearly 70 new banners of Hometown Heroes

Photos by Tom Rivers: This banner recognizes Chief Master Sgt. Terri Santoro who served in the U.S. Air Force from 1984 to 2018.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 21 May 2020 at 9:52 am

This banner displayed by City Hall features Dell Stork, who served with the Marine Corps during the Korean Conflict. He later served as Medina’s fire chief.

MEDINA – There are banners of more than 100 “Hometown Heroes” on display in Medina.

The portraits of soldiers, some currently in the military and some going back to the Civil War, are in the downtown and have spread to some of the side streets.

Last year, was the debut of the banners with 38. The banners from last year are back and are on West Avenue with a few on North Main close to Prospect Street.

Mary Woodruff, a Ridgeway town councilwoman, has coordinated the effort the past two years. The banners are proving popular. Families or sponsors pay $200 for a banner, which has the portrait on both sides. The banners are expected to last for three years, being displayed just before Memorial Day to just after Veterans Day in November.

After three years, the families or sponsors can keep the banner, or sooner if they don’t want to do a three-year cycle.

Woodruff said that the display of 107 banners looks “spectacular” and is giving the community a needed morale boost during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We need our spirits lifted and bringing our heroes home will do it!” she posted on Facebook.

She thanked the Medina Department of Public Works for getting the banners up this week. The Village Clerk’s Office led by Clerk Debbie Padoleski and Deputy Clerk Jada Burgess handles the money for the banners.

“I have to say this village is wonderful,” Woodruff said this morning. “This community is so appreciative of the return of the banners and featuring the heroes. Just walking around and seeing all of them, it gives me energy.”

Last year there was a banner unveiling inside the Orleans County YMCA, which used to be the Medina Armory, where soldiers trained. That reception was planned for May 16 but was cancelled due to the 10-person limit on social gatherings.

The new banners this year are in the downtown on Main Street, and East and West Center streets, and on Park Avenue. New locations have been added this year farther down on East and West Center streets, Park Avenue, Pearl Street, West Avenue and South Main Street.

Woodruff said there will be more banners next year. She wants input from Joe Perry, the DPW superintendent, on how many additional spots would be suitable for more banners. She thanked National Grid for its cooperation in allowing the banners on some of the company’s poles.

“The public is loving it,” she said about the response to the banners. “It’s building patriotism and celebrating the real heroes.”

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