Field of Honor

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BILLINGS - What builds a history museum, a home for veterans, and honors the service of others at the same time? The answer is the Field of Honor in Cody.

The north side of the Park County Complex is a quiet view of Heart Mountain. The South side is a riot of red, white, and blue. 800 flags and counting, make up the Field of Honor: a tribute to those who served.

Field of Honor Organizer, Jenny Zink said, “Afghanistan and Iraq, of course we’ve got tags here from WWII, we’ve got a couple from WWI. We have people who have been honored, or are still alive..."

Zink said people can buy the flags to honor teachers, or friends, not just military or first responders. She said the money raised this year will help renovate the Demaris House, which is the future Cody Heritage Museum.

The President of the Cody Heritage Museum Board, Marge Wilder said, “We want to preserve and tell the story of the town of Cody.”

The Demaris House was built in 1906 by a rancher who had health problems. He heard about the healing springs on the edge of town.

The Vice President of the Cody Heritage Museum Board and historian, Lynn Houze explained, “It had been a place that was used by Native Americans going back many, many years. And he came down here in 1883, from Montana”

But, the Demaris House had foundation problems which led to the project’s financial problems.

Wilder said, “We basically have used up our finances and not being able to continue with the project.”

So, the Field of Honor will help get the project going again.

The flags will also indirectly support the completion of a house under construction for a wounded veteran in Operation Finally Home.”

Zink explained, “Friday night we have a barbeque. We’re giving all the proceeds to the Finally Home Home.”

And last, but not least, the endless rows of flags are one more draw in this tourist town.

Zink smiled, “They love it.”

She said people from every state in the country stop, take pictures, and ask if they can contribute, too.

This is the third annual Field of Honor in Cody. The flags remain up through June 14, which is Flag Day.

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