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American Legion urges Montana communities to not cover fatality markers

Legion: Decorations cover posts meant for safety
Posted at 1:53 PM, Sep 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-27 15:53:36-04

There are hundreds of white crosses that stand next to highways throughout Gallatin County, even across the entire state.

Those are American Legion fatality markers and, lately, they’ve seen more and more of them covered up.

The American Legion Post #14 in Gallatin County says obstructions like this, even in memorial, are not what the posts are for. Each post stands as a symbol of where someone died in a highway crash and where the legion says a safety issue needs to be addressed.

The Legion works alongside the Montana Department of Transportation to maintain them. The legion adds if you want to put something up, feel free to do so -- just away from the markers.

“We, at the American Legion, appreciate and understand that people grieve," said Greg Harbac, fatality marker coordinator with Post #14. "We all grieve. We’ve lost friends. We’ve lost relatives from any number of things. Traffic accidents are especially heinous and that’s one of the reasons that we have the markers up. We’re possibly setting somebody else up for an accident.”

Harbac added that if you see a sign that’s covered, don’t try to take off the decorations yourself – instead, report it to the Gallatin County American Legion Post .