BROOMFIELD, COLO. - Chances are you’ve never seen it, unless you scrolled around Google Earth or flew out of the Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport.
But there is a message written on a warehouse just off U.S. 36 in Broomfield. It simply says “Hi Marty.”
The aerial dance company that sits beneath that roof never knew the story.
“As soon as we moved into this location, we were setting up our Google Maps address so that you could type in Illuminar Aerials, and we would pop up at this address,” owner Travis Moon said.
“And of course it’s really hard to miss if you’ve seen the picture on Google Maps – it says 'Hi Marty' in giant letters.”
But Moon and his coworkers never thought much of it, and never asked the building’s owner about it.
Had they, they would have heard a fascinating story.
Randy Law hired a young family friend to paint the top of that roof one hot summer about 12 years ago. While he was up there, he got bored and asked Randy if he could write a message.
Both Randy, and the teenager (at the time) Jared Debrine, came to one conclusion.
They wrote “Hi Marty” because Jared’s uncle Marty Bench was getting his pilot’s license at the time, and he commonly took off from Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport on the other side of U.S. 36.
“I said, 'Look, Marty, could you fly over my building, take a picture of it, so I could put it on a brochure to rent it more,'” Law said.
“He’s like, 'Oh, man, that was so awesome. I’ve been driving going by, anybody who gets in my plane, I make sure I go over it.' And he actually told me that he brought his instructor up there,” Law said.
Bench’s wife Gail said he got excited every time he saw it and after he got his pilot’s license, he would bring people up there just to see the sign.
It was meaningful for a man that meant so much to so many others.
And now that meaning has changed.
Marty Bench died in a plane crash 10 years ago near Kansas City. His friend was at the controls when the plane went down.
Randy offered to add a “RIP” to the sign but Gail didn’t want that.
"I told him, I thought it would just be cooler for Marty too… because I know he looks down on us. I have no doubts. I just think it’s more fun for him to just see the 'Hi Marty,'” Gail said.
Copyright 2016 KUSA