Local organization shows their support for veterans, while raising funds for the youth

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - The South Huntsville Optimist Club is showing their patriotism by initiating the "American Flag Patriotism Project."

The fundraising project started 2 years ago to benefit and serve the youth in the community. For $40 a year, flags can be rented for display from the organization. They take care of the materials and assemble several hundred flags in resident's yards on patriotic holidays.

Bob Gibbs's heart beats true for the red, white, and blue. Gibbs is the South Huntsville Club President for the Optimist Club and he spent many years working on the Arsenal.

"I`ve seen young soldiers go off to war and come back. Some come back injured," Gibbs explained.

The American flag is near and dear to his heart, and to many of his neighbors in the Buck`s Canyon community.

If you happen to pass through, it`s going to be hard not to keep your eye on the grand old flag, because they are everywhere.

"The whole purpose of it is to support patriotism and unity in our country and use it as a fundraiser to help kids and youth in our community," Gibbs said.

The "American Flag Patriotism Project" was an idea an Optimist Club member got from another organization in Iowa.

In Huntsville, more than 300 people are participating in renting the flags this year. They are placed out during four major holidays. They are put out on Memorial Day, Flag Day, July 4th, and Veterans Day.

Gibbs said the flags show our veterans they are appreciated and the money from the project gets poured back into the youth.

"We also issue scholarships and awards to them. All of the money that we as a club raise has to be used for youth projects," Gibbs explained.

Gibbs said when people participate they are not only showing the patriotism, but they also care about the youth.

If you would like to add flags to your neighborhood contact Gibbs by email at bobghsval@gmail.com.

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