KEESEVILLE — Many of the flagpoles created by Danny Kaifetz of Adirondack Flagpoles carry special meaning for him.
Gene Corbett of Freedom, N.H., received one in 2006. It was for his son, Capt. Sean Corbett, a Green Beret with a Special Forces team who had just been deployed to Afghanistan and was involved in combat operations in Kandahar Province.
Kaifetz said Corbett told him his son volunteered to go back four times, for a total of five tours leading his Special Forces team.
PRAYERS AT THE POLE
Corbett said he went out to the flagpole every day and prayed for his son's safe return, which finally happened on Feb. 17.
"Gene told me the flagpole was a symbol to him of what his son was fighting for," Kaifetz said.
"That explains what these flagpoles mean to people and what a privilege it is to make them."
Another flagpole with special meaning was one he donated to the Friends of Firefighters, a Brooklyn-based nonprofit organization that was formed in the aftermath of 9-11 and continues to provide services to active and retired members of the Fire Department of New York community.
Kaifetz felt honored to create that flagpole and even more so after he was able to attend the dedication ceremony on Sept. 11, 2011.
He also attended the dedication of nine flagpoles he created for the Poway Veterans Park in Poway, Calif.
The ceremony took place on Veterans Day in 2010.
A double-masted 56-foot pole has been on display at Congress Hall in Cape May, N.J., since June 3, 2012.
It was erected to mark the 10th anniversary of the restoration of the historic structure, which has served as a summer home to several sitting presidents.
He is currently working on a 40-foot flagpole for the Veterans Hospital in Alameda, Calif. It will be the largest single-mast pole he has ever built.
Kaifetz was asked to recreate the design of the original, which was made from a 100-year-old Douglas fir tree.
He was given the base and top to create exact replicas of those portions, right down to the same grooves and bushings.
"It took longer to make the top 18 feet and the bottom 5 feet than the rest of the pole," he said.
Kaifetz donates at least one flagpole a year to some worthy organization or individual, usually associated with the military or public safety in some way.
The first one went to First Sgt. Kim Zane Fox, a veteran and wounded warrior from Oregon who had received the Bronze Star.
"His entire unit showed up in uniform to help him erect it," Kaifetz said.
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