Flag will fly for Velez, fallen officers


By Jason Hawk - jhawk@aimmediamidwest.com



Bearing the Thin Blue Line flag, Christian Velez leads the Comets onto the field the day after his father’s death in September 2016. Now that flag will fly over the field every day.

Bearing the Thin Blue Line flag, Christian Velez leads the Comets onto the field the day after his father’s death in September 2016. Now that flag will fly over the field every day.


Jason Hawk | Amherst News-Times

A memorial is being built at Mercy Health Stadium to honor Comets football fan and father Kenneth Velez.

The late state trooper was killed in a roadside incident on Sept. 15, 2016.

A fund in his name was established by Velez’ children: Devin, a 2011 graduate of Amherst Steele High; Andria, a member of the Class of 2013; and Christian, who will be a senior this year.

They have donated funds to construct an additional flag pole in front of the field house at Mercy Stadium, the home of the Comets.

The Thin Blue Line will fly there to honor police and other service personnel who have lost their lives in the line of duty. Below will be engraved bricks honoring the memory of both Velez and other fallen officers.

“We hope that when people see the flag flying 24/7, illuminated at night and during the day still flying high, they appreciate what police officers do for us on a daily basis,” said Mike Biro, a Comets freshmen football assistant coach instrumental to the effort.

The goal is to unveil and dedicate the memorial at the Comets’ Aug. 31 football home opener.

Biro said the way the Amherst community rallied around the Velez siblings “captured a moment in time.” He hopes the project keeps that spirit alive as a permanent reminder of the sacrifices made by Ohio’s public servants.

Jason Hawk can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @EditorHawk on Twitter.

Bearing the Thin Blue Line flag, Christian Velez leads the Comets onto the field the day after his father’s death in September 2016. Now that flag will fly over the field every day.
https://www.theamherstnewstimes.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/43/2018/07/web1_flag.jpgBearing the Thin Blue Line flag, Christian Velez leads the Comets onto the field the day after his father’s death in September 2016. Now that flag will fly over the field every day.

Jason Hawk | Amherst News-Times

By Jason Hawk

jhawk@aimmediamidwest.com