WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE)- A "Flags of Freedom" display at Wichita's Machinists Union near I-235 and Meridian is honoring and remembering Kansas veterans.

The United Way of the Plains says the two-week display of 600 American flags is part of a collaboration between it and the local union to honor, celebrate and remember veterans this Memorial Day. Kansans can and have purchased dedications to be displayed on those flags.

"It's fun to touch a flag thinking it's honoring your husband," said Darnell Holopirek, who purchased three certificates: one for her first husband who died in the Vietnam war, one for her second husband who's still living and another for a friend of her family.

"I thanked God for the opportunity to come and celebrate the veterans," said Holopirek, when asked what she did when she came out Friday.

The display is located in the field next to the Machinists Union, and Holopirek said she was disappointed that there wasn't a larger crowd out. She said this time of year is the time to honor our country's veterans and remember some of the sacrifices they made; like her first husband.

"You wait 10 days for his body to get home and you hope that you get to see it which I did....but it was really hard," said Holopirek about the experience.

She described as one she would never forget, but said that it was an important pain to share and remember.

"God has been with us through lots of turmoil and a lot of happiness," said Holopirek.

The United Way of the Plains will host a program at the Flags of Freedom display Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m.

The program is listed below:

  • 2:00 p.m. Welcome - Mr. Abel Frederic, Vice President of Community Impact, United Way of the Plains
  • 2:01 p.m. Presenting of the Colors - McConnell Air Force Honor Guard (entering from south of the building and presenting colors east of the podium)
  • 2:04 p.m. National Anthem
  • 2:10 p.m. City of Wichita Remarks - Wichita Mayor Mr. Brandon Whipple
  • 2:15 p.m. Union Remarks - Mr. Cornell Beard, IAM & AW District Lodge #70
  • 2:20  p.m. McConnell Air Force Remarks - Major Chad Herner, Commander, 22d Logistics Readiness Squadron
  • 2:25 p.m. Closing Remarks - Mr. Pete Najera, President and CEO, United Way of the Plains
  • 2:30 p.m. Taps

Additionally, if you would like to purchase a dedication in honor or memory of a service member you can do so for $30 each here through May 31.