By Master Sgt. Pete MayesDecember 5, 2013
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. December 4, 2013 -- Clarksville residents will be able to have their own, "Rendezvous with Destiny" -- or at least a rendezvous to their next destination - via the city's transit lines.
The strong relationship forged between the Fort Campbell community and the city of Clarksville continues to flourish as Clarksville Mayor Kim McMillan and 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) Senior Commander Brig. Gen. Mark Stammer unveiled the city's newest bus Wednesday afternoon at the Clarksville Transit System bus fleet.
"We are very proud of this tribute bus. The Fort Campbell Installation is vitally important to the Clarksville community and we want to show how much we all appreciate the work of every man and woman at Fort Campbell," McMillan said.
Called "the 101st Tribute Bus", the vehicle is a black and gold colored wrapped bus that has a mural of the American flag stars and stripes draped across its top and across its sides. The bus seats 29 passengers and has additional room for standing.
It has a huge 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) mural painted on its sides, depicting Soldiers on the battlefield, as well as Blackhawks and Apache helicopters flying off to their next mission.
A picture of Old Abe is faded into the background on the back of the vehicle. Across the back reads the words, "The City of Clarksville Supports our Troops."
Underneath the side mural is a banner, "All Gave Some, Some Gave All."
The front of the bus has a mural of the "Old Abe" Patch with the banner, "In honor of Fort Campbell" posted across it.
Also embedded into the mural are four smaller "Old Abe" Patches which are scattered along the bus.
"We might have to include how many of these patches are found on the Tribute Bus on our Soldier/NCO of the of the Month boards," Stammer said.
City of Clarksville Communications Director Jennifer Rawls said the Clarksville Transit wrapped buses are a new project this year. The idea to create a Fort Campbell Tribute Bus wrapped bus came from Norman Quirion, who heads up the program. It was supported wholeheartedly by the mayor, CTS and the other sponsors, Rawls said.
Those sponsors are: USAA, Straight Line Fence, Screaming Eagle Ready Mix, Clarksville Transit Systems, Clarksville Gas & Water, Clarksville Department of Electricity (CDE), and the Office of Mayor Kim McMillan.
"We appreciate their professionalism and dedication to our community. Although we cannot thank them enough for all they do, I hope this tribute will be a constant reminder of our appreciation and support," McMillan said.
Stammer praised the city of Clarksville and Mayor McMillan for the concept.
"This is a great honor from the city of Clarksville, and one that continues to show the excellent and long-standing relationship the city and the Fort Campbell community has forged over the years," he said.
"Fort Campbell and the 101st Airborne Division are very blessed to maintain the type of relationship we have over these years, and we cannot express enough gratitude to the city of Clarksville for this gesture. It is communities like this one that helps keep our nation and our Army Strong."
The bus will begin service immediately and will serve various routes throughout the City of Clarksville.