Saint Clair Adding Hometown Heroes to Its Streets

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SAINT CLAIR -- One Schuylkill County community is taking the time to honor its veterans this week ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.

The Saint Clair Community and Historical Society just started putting up banners that feature veterans from the community along North Second Street.

For local veterans like Ed Quirin, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps in the late 1960's, the gesture makes him happy to see his hometown honor the military.

"I think it is important to remember them because nobody wants to be forgotten," said Quirin.

The banners cost about $200 to make and install, and the Historical Society tells Newswatch 16 that they're not making any profits from them.

"About two years ago, I saw them in Tamaqua. I thought they were beautiful. They were breathtaking when you pulled on to their main street," said Bonnie Baker, the President of the Saint Clair Community and Historical Society. "We're doing this to honor our veterans because we are proud of them and we owe them a great deal."

Resident Mary Beth Gombar purchased a banner for her father -- a Navy veteran. She was overjoyed when she found out it was up.

"And I said, 'Oh! Where is it?' She goes 'Its right up by the bank.' I got so excited," Gombar gushed.

The Historical Society says it's received a  great response from the community. It has 58 banners going up right now -- just in time for the Fourth of July.

"You know, we're going to have a lot more people a relatives coming into town over the Fourth for all the picnics and everything...and I think they're going to really enjoy seeing these banners up," Quirin added.

A banner of Ed Quirin is going up soon. Some of his family members will also join him.

"You have to admire anyone who are in the military these days. I think they're all doing a good job," he said.

Soon, more hometown heroes like him will be added to the streets of Saint Clair.