Permanent Memorial Completed at Lee Highway

Almost immediately following the tragic shootings, people began paying their respects at those locations.

The makeshift memorial on Lee Highway stretched an entire block, dotted with thousands of American flags and hand written condolences.

Sunday afternoon, a permanent memorial was dedicated, made of stone, a flagpole and images of the fallen five.

"It’s more than just a plaque and some stone and concrete," said Steve Maynard who is the owner of this strip mall on Lee Highway. "It’s really the heart of people and what people are going to see for generations to come because they’re going to drive by this and go, you know, that’s there because of this."

Hundreds of people sat in the parking lot listening while Congressman Chuck Fleischmann, Chattanooga Police Chief Fred Fletcher and other officials spoke about sacrifice and the strength Chattanooga as a city has displayed.

The owner of the Lee Highway property explains how private citizens and business owners joined together to erect quickly this permanent monument.

Maynard says contractors were even fighting over who got to donate their supplies for it.

"We got a call from out of the blue a gentleman saying he wanted to donate a flag pole," said Maynard. "Another gentleman called and said I’m giving you a flag. Somebody else called and said I’m putting in the lights. This has all been what they did. Nothing that I did. Yeah it’s my property, I made it available. I’ve support everything they did but all the work that they did is evident here today."

Hixson High school JROTC was on hand to present the colors.

One of the flag bearers explains what an honor it was to carry the flags for this ceremony.

"It meant a lot to serve these guys as they served us before," said Hixson High junior Wade Coetzee who is a captain with the JROTC. "It’s a good service to the community."

Congressman Fleischmann presented a flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol on July 30th. It now has a home flying over this memorial.

Categories: Local News

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