On September 12, 2001 America woke up to this iconic image. A huge flag was draped over the side of the Pentagon as military and civilian employees went back to work in the still-burning building, both actions serving to notify the world that our national resolve could not be shaken by random acts of terrorism.
What most of us do not know is that a smaller version of the flag was posted on the roof on the night of 9/11.
According to a news report by Laura Evans of Fox 5 out of Washington, D.C., she was approached by an unknown man carrying a flag as she was preparing for a live broadcast on the night of the attacks. He was agitated and asked her to arrange to get the flag put on the building’s roof. She passed it on to two people in uniform who eventually got permission to put it up that night, where it stayed until it was replaced the next morning with the much larger version.
To me, the story is reminiscent of the flag raising at Iwo Jima, when a smaller flag that had been hoisted at the summit of Mount Suribachi was replaced by a larger version that would be visible to the ships at sea.
September 12 was a special day for America. Just as everyone can remember what they felt on 9/11, so can everyone remember the feeling of unity and determination that we all felt the next day, the day we began to heal and come together as one nation.