Flagpole dedicated in honor of veterans at St. Marys Airport

Despite Saturday's chilly temperatures, a small group of residents gathered in the morning at the St. Marys Airport to celebrate a flagpole dedication, hosted byJerry Bonfardine, a member of the Elk Flyers Club and representative of local pilots.The flagpole was presented to the St. Marys Airport and the Airport Authority, with members of the St. Marys Servicemen's Burial Detail in attendance as they presented colors at the event.According to Bonfardine, the flagpole was installed on Dec. 7, the 70th anniversary of Pearl Harbor."The flag at half-mast is dedicated in memory of our veterans, past and present, and most of all to those veterans who gave their all, so we Americans can enjoy the liberties that we all enjoy today," Bonfardine said. "Since the Revolutionary War of 1776, American military men's and women's blood has been spilled around the world preserving freedom for those people."He then described what a veteran was, stating they range from active duty, discharged, retired or reserve."A veteran is someone who, at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to the United States of America for the amount of, up to and including their life," Bonfardine said.Bonfardine said prior to this time, the airport's new terminal, which has been in place for four or five years, did not have a flagpole, which he said was imperative for all public buildings to have.