WESTBOROUGH – The Westborough Veterans Advisory Board is now accepting applications to honor local veterans through its new Hometown Heroes banner program.
The banners will display a veteran’s image, military branch and period of service, according to a statement.
Banners will honor local veterans
The banners will be installed beginning on Memorial Day of next year. They’ll hang for eight weeks following that first installation. They’ll then be installed again for eight weeks beginning on Oct. 1 and running through Veterans Day.
“With over 550 military veterans currently living in Westborough, the town of Westborough has many to thank and honor for stepping up to help preserve our freedoms and provide the free and comfortable lives we are all living,” the Veterans Advisory Board wrote in its statement announcing these applications.
“The [Veterans Advisory Board] is committed to recognizing and honoring the service provided by veterans,” that statement continued.
This program follows in the footsteps of similar ones both in the immediate area and throughout the region.
Westborough’s banners will be funded through the support of families, friends and local businesses, which can sponsor banners at a rate of $150 per banner.
“Additional donations are welcome and will allow the [Veterans Advisory Board] to continue to grow the program,” the board wrote.
Plans discussed in Select Board meeting
Veterans Advisory Board members presented this proposal last month in a meeting with the Select Board on Nov. 9.
Select Board members supported the Hometown Heroes program and commended the Veterans Advisory Board for working to bring it to Westborough.
“I think this is a great thing,” Select Board Member Ian Johnson said. “It really is something that is pretty special.”
Several board members also raised concerns, however, about the timing of the Hometown Heroes proposal.
The Veterans Advisory Board had sought permission to hang its banners continuously from Memorial Day to Veterans Day each year. This required an exemption from a recently enacted policy that limits banner displays to 90 days.
The Select Board considered the request and ultimately voted to allow the Veterans Advisory Board to reserve banner space for the first 90 days following Memorial Day. Banners would be able to remain on display through Veterans Day if no other groups request the space.
Speaking on Dec. 16, Jim Tepper of the Veterans Advisory Board told the Community Advocate that another group had already requested banner space beginning in August. So, he said, the members of Veterans Advisory Board met with Town Manager Kristi Williams and made the current plans to hang banners in two eight-week intervals around Memorial Day and Veterans Day.
Applications now available
Applications for banners are available at the Town Hall, Senior Center, online at the Veterans Advisory Board website, or by sending a request to the Veterans Advisory Board at Town Hall.
Individuals can contact the Hometown Heroes program at the Veterans Advisory Board at Town Hall in Westborough, or call the Veterans Service Office at 508-366-3085 for further information or to donate to the program.
For more information, also visit the Westborough Veterans Advisory Board Facebook page or the Veterans Advisory Board website www.town.westborough.ma.us/veterans-advisory-board.