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Fund-raiser's flags to represent victims of Sept. 11 attacks

March 24, 2004|by SCOTT BUTKI

scottb@herald-mail.com

If all goes as planned, American flags representing the casualties in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks will be erected and flown for three days at Antietam National Battlefield.

The Hagerstown and Antietam Exchange clubs plan to sell about 3,000 American-made all-weather flags with the proceeds going to the Parent-Child Center, Millie Lowman, executive director of the Parent-Child Center in Hagerstown, said Tuesday.

The flags cost $30 each and there will be an additional charge of $15 for flags that are shipped, she said.

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The 3-foot by 5-foot flags will fly from 8-foot poles at the battlefield, she said. The flag poles are included in the sale price.

Most of the flags will be taken down on Sunday, July 4, and given to people who buy them as part of a community fund-raiser, she said.

A few may be taken down on July 3 by people attending the annual Maryland Symphony Orchestra concert at the battlefield, she said.

The fund-raiser is expected to bring in $80,000 if a corporate sponsor steps forward and $35,000 if there is no sponsor, Lowman said.

In addition to raising funds, the flags are intended to serve as an awareness program to let all know the devastating effect the 9/11 attacks had on everyone, Lowman said.

The flags will be erected by volunteers in a 2-acre area southwest of the visitor center, battlefield Superintendent John Howard said.

In organizing the fund-raiser, Lowman is working with Healing Field, a national group that was formed after the 9/11 attacks to memorialize its victims and to give the nation a chance to heal, Dave Walker, national media director for the Sandy, Utah-based group, said.

The flags will be set 5 feet apart in rows and the result will be a spectacular sight, he said.

Organizers are seeking volunteers to help with the fund-raiser, Lowman said.

There is to be a ceremony on July 1 as the flags are erected and the name of each person who died in the attacks is read aloud, Lowman said. The flags will remain up during the annual concert at the battlefield and then will be taken down on July 4th, she said.

The people buying the flags will receive the flag, a certificate of authenticity indicating the flag was flown, the name of a person who died in the attacks and the flag pole, she said.

For more information, call the center at 301-791-2224. The Internet site of www.exchangeclubs.com has more information about the event.

The two clubs are selling three types of flags:

-- A traditional American flag.

-- A flag that lists the names of the firefighters who died in the World Trade Center.

- A flag that lists all those who died in the attacks.

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