Utility Locators Surprise Local Boy with 811-Themed Birthday Party

Indiana youth has always had a fixation for the brightly colored flags thrown down by utility line locators

A South Bend, Indiana, youth celebrating his birthday didn’t care about the balloons; he wanted something else brightly colored — utility line locator flags.

According to WNDU TV in Indiana, the boy, Nathan, has always been drawn to utility line locator flags. “Nathan has been fixated on flags for probably two years,” says his mother, Lisa, in an interview with the television station. “And it was one of those fixations that just never went away.”

Knowing how much her son was drawn to the flags, Lisa reached out to utility-locating company USIC and told them about her son’s obsession.

USIC invited Nathan to their Christmas party and set him up with several flags. The employees enjoyed it so much they surprised him again on his birthday with a party in late October — with an 811 cake, spray paint and more flags.

“We thought that was the coolest thing ever,” says Josh Scheibelhut of USIC. “Because a lot of kids idolize police officers or firemen, we don’t get a lot of credit for what we do. This kid thinks we’re awesome.”

The utility locators helped Nathan mark his family’s front yard and quizzed him on what the flags mean. The crews also provided Nathan with blank paperwork that they use in the field so that he can practice.

“I want to be one of them one day,” Nathan says.



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