8x10 Roanoke Neon Star located on Mill Mountain/photo by Phillip Barrett Jr
The Roanoke Star was constructed in 1949 and was illuminated for the first time on November 23, 1949.
It was meant to serve as a seasonal Christmas decoration for the holiday shopping season.
Through a sponsorship from the Roanoke Merchants Association, Roy C. Kinsey of Kinsey Sign Co., along with his three sons, Roy Jr., Bob and Warren, designed and built the star.
The structure is actually three stars that are formed by 2,000 feet of neon tubing. At 88.5 feet tall and 10,000 lbs, the star illuminated every night in white; on Memorial Day, Flag Day, July 4th, September 11 and Veterans Day; the star is red, white and blue.