Below are sentiments from our President & CEO, Brian Copes, as we look ahead to the upcoming patriotic season:
Some thoughts on Flag Day. I was raised to respect the flag and memorized the Pledge of Allegiance, but I don’t think I ever really appreciated the significance and symbolism of our American Flag until I wore it as part of my military uniform. There was no mystery about “who” I served – America and its people. Once I had traveled overseas for the first time, I stopped taking for granted what an unrecognized comfort it was to see American flags on homes and businesses and in public spaces. When I deployed to a combat theater, it made me a target. In retirement, it’s a proud and poignant reminder of my service but also an often nostalgic (melancholy?) remembrance of the 38-years I was privileged to wear the cloth of this nation while serving in the greatest Army on Earth. I miss that so very deeply sometimes. Our beloved American Flag is inextricably woven into the fabric of my life and someday, it will drape my coffin, then be crisply and respectfully folded, and another Soldier will present it to a loved one with the proscribed expression, “On behalf of the President of the United States, the United States Army, and a grateful Nation; please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for your loved one’s honorable and faithful service.” That’s a comforting thought. Just something to ponder on Flag Day.
FLAG DAY. In the United States, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States on June 14, 1777, by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. The Flag Resolution, passed on June 14, 1777, stated: “Resolved, That the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”
ALSO the ARMY BIRTHDAY. The United States Army also celebrates the U.S. Army birthday on this date; Congress adopted “the American continental army” after reaching a consensus position in the Committee of the Whole on June 14, 1775.
RAGGED OLD FLAG is the 47th album by American country music singer Johnny Cash, released on Columbia Records in 1974. The title track, and the only single from the album, is a spoken word tribute to patriotism amid the Watergate scandal.
I walked through a county courthouse square
On a park bench, an old man was sittin’ there.
I said, “Your old court house is kinda run down,
He said, “Naw, it’ll do for our little town”.
I said, “Your old flag pole is leaned a little bit,
And that’s a ragged old flag you got hangin’ on it”.
He said, “Have a seat”, and I sat down,
“Is this the first time you’ve been to our little town”
I said, “I think it is”
He said “I don’t like to brag, but we’re kinda proud of
That Ragged Old Flag
“You see, we got a little hole in that flag there,
When Washington took it across the Delaware.
and It got powder burned the night Francis Scott Key sat watching it,
writing “Say Can You See”
It got a bad rip in New Orleans, with Packingham & Jackson
tugging at its seams.
and It almost fell at the Alamo
beside the Texas flag,
But she waved on though.
She got cut with a sword at Chancellorsville,
And she got cut again at Shiloh Hill.
There was Robert E. Lee and Beauregard and Bragg,
And the south wind blew hard on
That Ragged Old Flag
“On Flanders Field in World War I,
She got a big hole from a Bertha Gun,
She turned blood red in World War II
She hung limp, and low, a time or two,
She was in Korea, Vietnam, She went where she was sent
by her Uncle Sam.
She waved from our ships upon the briny foam
and now they’ve about quit wavin’ back here at home
in her own good land here She’s been abused,
She’s been burned, dishonored, denied an’ refused,
And the government for which she stands
Has scandalized throughout out the land.
And she’s getting thread bare, and she’s wearin’ thin,
But she’s in good shape, for the shape she’s in.
Cause she’s been through the fire before
and i believe she can take a whole lot more.”
So we raise her up every morning
And we take her down every night,
We don’t let her touch the ground,
And we fold her up right.
On second thought
I *do* like to brag
Cause I’m mighty proud of
That Ragged Old Flag”