Latest News – December 16

Flags On The Avenue for A Fallen Hero: Honor N.P.

By Kathy Bedell

Residents and visitors will see the flags out on Leadville’s historic Harrison Avenue today and pause to think why? Why does Leadville fly flags on December 16?

Brad and Rachele Palmer display flags on Harrison Avenue in honor of their son Nicklas J. Palmer, a Leadville Marine who died in the line of duty seven years ago today, Dec. 16.

Brad and Rachele Palmer display flags on Harrison Avenue in honor of their son Nicklas J. Palmer, a Leadville Marine who died in the line of duty seven years ago today, December. 16.

If you’ve lived in Leadville or Lake County for any length of time, the name Nicklas J. Palmer will answer that question.

For it was on this date, in 2006, that 19-year-old Marine Lance Crpl Nick Palmer from Leadville was killed in the line of duty in Fallujah, Iraq.

Since that horrific day when the news of Nick’s death reached home, there have been countless tributes to this young man’s courage and valor. Flying the flags on the avenue is one of those tributes to Nick. 

And here is one more. . . .

Honor N.P.

After hearing the heartbreaking-news seven years ago, I grabbed my skis and headed to the Lake County High School football field, where Nick used to play football. I was going to ski out my message. It was a farewell note of sorts.

Honor N.P. - A ski tribute for Marine Nicklas J. Palmer. Photo: Stephanie Lovern

Honor N.P. – A ski tribute for Marine Nicklas J. Palmer. Photo: Stephanie Lovern

The final message became a lasting tribute that seemed to resonate with many people, particularly other service people. I have been told by Nick’s Dad Brad Palmer, that the “Honor N.P.” photo has been featured in various publications and presentations and also acts as a screen saver photo for some Marines.  

For me, skiing out the message was my way of honoring a fallen soldier, someone who touched many of us here, still does. This one’s for you, Nick.

Gone, But Never Forgotten.

Nick is the son of Rachel and Brad Palmer of Leadville and brother Dustin with his family wife Jesse, daughter Kylie and son and namesake Nicklas J. Palmer.
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