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The Holiday Spirit —Higher Calling of Outdoor Advertising

Who are we?

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This creative was posted on digital billboards in the Dayton area after Detective Del Rio was shot, says Sue Hohenbrink, Lamar-Dayton.


The Holiday Spirit

By Ken Klein, Exec. VP, Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA)


From the heartland, here is a year-end story that salutes holiday spirit and also explains who we are; a story about thanks.

In Dayton, Ohio, a detective serving a search warrant was shot twice . . . in the face. Thirty years on the force, his name was Jorge Del Rio.

When Detective Del Rio died three days later (November 7), his organs were donated to sustain others, per his instructions.

At a big arena, the governor spoke at the funeral, which drew police officers from other states. A less-experienced female officer-colleague eulogized: “You made me feel like an equal.”

Afterwards, the detective’s widow shared a worry with law enforcement officers. How, she wondered, would she ever be able to respond to the many letters, support messages, and acts of kindness?

Federal agents (who worked with Del Rio on drug enforcement) suggested billboards.

When asked, Nick Keyes Sr. (Key-Ads, Dayton) refused to quote a price; the Del Rio family “thank you” message was posted pro bono immediately on digital billboards.

“Billboards all over town . . . have a simple and very heart-felt message: ‘Thank you, Dayton, — Del Rio Family,’” wrote columnist Howard Wilkinson in the Dayton newspaper on December 15.

Who are we?

  • Family-owned Key-Ads in Dayton, honored to relay thanks to a community
  • Bob Fessler (Lamar-Kansas City), whose “wanted” billboards helped solve a crime case in 2004, forging new partnerships with law enforcement
  • The next out of home media person ready to lend a hand

Holiday greetings, as we pause to appreciate the chance — the high calling – to express “thank you” on behalf of a lawman’s family in Dayton, to help public safety, and more.



(Ken Klein is executive vice president of the Out of Home Advertising Association of America)









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