Suttie Economy made an impression wherever he went, whether he was tooling around Roanoke in his red, white and blue Yugo, urging city officials to maintain the Roanoke War Memorial or handing a pack of Juicy Fruit gum to people he met along the way.
“My understanding is that Dad received Juicy Fruit in his C-rations when he was on the USS English out in the South Pacific,” Della Economy-Bryant explained. “And he said if he ever made it home he would give something to someone every day.”
Economy was proud of his military service during World War II, but he was passionate about honoring those who never made it home.
We spoke with him in 2008 when, after years of lobbying, the marble flower vases he had requested were finally added to the War Memorial.
“I was so proud, still proud,” he told us then. “I don’t care who knows I cried, something to be proud of. Never forget those veterans.”