July 2, 2013- Rancho Cucamonga, CA – The City of Rancho Cucamonga has taken its Armed Forces Banner Program from the streets to the web with the launching of an online tool which enables the community to view each of the banners from a system, based on Esri geographic mapping services, pin-pointing and sharing a photo of each of the over 400 banner sites in the city. Viewable from the City’s website at www.CityofRC.us/ArmedServices, family and friends can search and locate the exact location of a service member’s banner site.
“Esri is proud to partner with the City of Rancho Cucamonga in this effort to honor local military members,” said Christopher Thomas, Esri’s Director of Government Markets. “The story-telling mapping templates bring about an interactive forum for community building. The web application allows citizens to explore their community, share their pride with relatives and friends, and maintain a connection with loved ones.”
The City of Rancho Cucamonga was an early adopter of Esri’s geographic information systems (GIS) technology. Thousands of local governments have followed their lead in the use of GIS to automate data, improve government services―such as public works, planning, finance, police, and fire―and encourage citizen engagement. With Esri’s ArcGIS platform, the City is now pioneering new frontiers in the delivery of government to its constituents.
“It is a pleasure for us to be able to know that a grandmother on the East Coast can go onto our website and be able to see the service banner in honor of their grandchild,” continued Mayor Michael. “Even more importantly, service personnel themselves who are deployed or stationed elsewhere, can see the hometown pride Rancho Cucamonga has for them as they serve our country.”
In November of 2005, the City of Rancho Cucamonga launched an Armed Forces Banner program to honor and recognize hometown active duty military personnel during periods of military conflict. Since that time, over 600 military service men and women have proudly graced the streets lining of Rancho Cucamonga. “The community and the City Council are dedicated to showing support to our active military during periods of conflict,” shared Mayor L. Dennis Michael. “We honor them by proudly displaying their photo, name, and branch of service.”
Currently, over 400 active military service men and women, designated by a single blue star, have banners on display and 15 display a single gold star, representing those who have died while in service to our country.
A donor initially provided the financial support to launch the program, and community support has continued to be provided even by those most impacted by the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. Rick and Kim Creed, parents of Corporal Matthew Creed, killed in action October 22, 2006 in Iraq, recently initiated an effort to assist with the cost of replacing worn and weathered banners. “We have several service personnel who have committed to career military service,” shared Gold Star father Rick Creed. “If their banner was one of the first to go up, we want to be involved and be able to help honor them with a new banner and keep our community looking good.”
The Creed family has an annual holiday light display in which they project a photo of each military banner in the city onto their garage, a photo Rick takes himself, collecting donations each holiday season. “Last year, we provided a donation to the building of the veteran’s memorial, Freedom Courtyard, on behalf of the RC Gold Star Families; this year, we are focused on helping with banners.”