Palm Bay banners honoring local service members

The city of Palm Bay is honoring local members of the armed forces by hoisting banners high for all to see.


what you need to know

  • City of Palm Bay’s military tribute banner program honors local members of the armed forces
  • Last year, the event displayed 38 banners from Veterans Day through Memorial Day.
  • City officials say they expect to display even more banners this year

Tammy Thurber-Baker, whose son served in the Navy, said the tribute meant a lot to him.

She said that from an early age, she knew that her son Brandon wanted to serve his country. And respect those who came before him.

“On Fridays he would buy donuts and coffee and bring them to homeless elders in our neighborhood,” Thurber-Baker said. “He loved his stories and what he had to say, so the community had an impact on who he became.”

Brandon graduated high school at the age of 17 and immediately enlisted in the US Navy. He had served only one year when he was killed in a motorcycle accident while on his way home in 2018.

But for his now Gold Star mother, who also served in the military, it was the quality of his short life that he is proud of.

“I reflect on what he could have been in 18 years and what he has achieved,” Thurber-Baker said.

Around her home, she pays tribute to the life of her son and his military service—including his uniform, shoes, and photographs.

But his ashes, and also a flag.

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“Not just another name or figure, he really became someone,” Thurber-Baker said.

Outside, she proudly displays two banners featuring Brandon, which is part of Palm Bay’s military tribute banner program.

Banners honor veterans associated with active duty and the city.

Thurber-Baker said it was nice to know that his city would pay such tribute to members of the military like his son.

“People will see my son for years to come, and Palm Bay is allowing our veterans to thank us in ways that have never been thanked before,” she said. “They were not left behind or forgotten.”

A total of 38 banners were displayed throughout downtown Palm Bay from Veterans Day to Memorial Day last year.

City officials say they expect even more performances this year.

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