Hometown Hero: Jimmy Silva

Hometown Hero: Jimmy Silva

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - There are some sights you feel more than you see, and a new flag hanging in the breeze always touches Jimmy Silva deep down in his heart.

"It kind of flutters a little bit,'' Silva said. "It makes me feel so wonderful.''

Silva wants others to be able to have that feeling, even in a place where feeling good is not always a priority. The Air Force veteran monitors the condition of the flags flying in Bonaventure Cemetery, and when he feels one needs to be replaced, he replaces it with a brand new flag that he then raises again.

"A lot of people lost their lives for this flag and I love to see it,'' Silva said. "I have one at my house that I keep up 24 hours a day and I have a light on it.''

Silva first took notice of the Bonaventure flags about three years ago when he was visiting his wife's grave. Now, he spends a few minutes a week every few months replenishing the colors.

"I just go around and see which ones need to be done,'' he said. "I've done in the last two weeks about seven, but there's about 10 altogether.''

For this WTOC Hometown Hero, making sure they are in good condition has more to do with the flag than whose grave it flies over.

Silva, a Savannah native, has never recognized any of the names on the gravestones under the flags, but always knows when it's time to change a flag.

"Not all are on veterans' graves, some are just on a private grave,'' he said. "But it doesn't matter to me. That flag is there. No matter who it is, that flag represents our country and men and women gave their life for it, and I just want to do my duty as a veteran.''

Silva takes the old flags to the American Legion, who properly disposes of them.

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