CTE Teams Up with VFW Post 3312

Belle Fourche News

Members of the Belle Fourche High School Career and Technical Education (CTE) center teamed up with the Center of the Nation VFW Post 3312, Belle Fourche, and provided a fix for a long-time problem.

Decades ago, the VFW Post 3312 installed 160 flag pole holders around the outside perimeter of the Pineslope Cemetery for the Memorial Day program flags. The flags once draped the caskets of departed Veterans of Belle Fourche and, when the weather is appropriate, are flown around the cemetery perimeter. The pole holders are buried in the ground and at one time had covers to prevent debris from falling into the holes resulting in an improper fit for the poles. Over time many of the covers are either barely working or completely missing.

Mr. Jim Hartwell, the CTE Welding instructor (and Veteran), understood and accepted the proposal. Northern Hills Scrap Metal & Recycling, Belle Fourche, provided some working materials and members of the welding class provided the tools, effort and knowhow.

Without taking away from the efforts of those who produced the original covers, it’s safe to say that the task of producing this generation of 160 pole hole covers resulted in a very long-lasting product and, most likely, in less time. The CTE has a programmable laser cutter and the welding unit of today is nothing like the welding unit of ‘yesterday.’

It is a refreshing confirmation to know that a small project can remain a small project in a community that cares. Without local support, a small project like this one can turn into a major problem to accomplish. VFW Post 3312 extends a sincere thank you to everyone involved in this small project.

The VFW presents a very special salute to the Belle Fourche High School Career and Technical Education center, Mr. Hartwell, and all the students who put these covers together in short order. When a plan comes together in your welding classroom, it really stays together.