“I was 12 years old, and it was 1982,” began . “Ronald Reagan was reading a letter from a sailor on the midway. The sailor was talking about finding some Vietnamese refugees on a boat two or three days away from death.
He said that as they approached this vessel floating there in the middle of the ocean, the occupants began to shout, 'Hey, freedom man! Hey, freedom man!'
That's what flag day is for me.”
In honor of Snellville's first official celebration of Flag Day, Woodall presented the city with a flag that was previously flown at our nation's capitol.
“The American flag is the only flag in the world that when you see it come over a hill, you know it's there to liberate you rather than enslave you,” said Woodall.
To Jimmy Jackson, Senior Vice Commander of VFW 4180, the celebration meant a lot. Jackson served in the Air Force for twenty years (1962-1982). Mike Sabbagh, one of the organizers of today's event, invited the entire post to take part in the celebration and to honor them.
“This is a historic event for the city,” said councilman Mike Sabbaugh during the ceremony. “It's a time when Americans reflect on the creation of the nation's freedom. The flag of the United States represents freedom and has been an enduring symbol of the country's ideals since its early days.”
Robert (Bob) Spidel served in the army for 30 years (and 24 days). He served in Vietnam and Desert Storm.
“It means an awful lot,” Spidel said of the city's official celebration. He also noted that the day is celebrated on the Army's birthday – the 237th, to be exact.
The flag that is now flying in front of the Snellville Police Department came with an inscription that read:
“It's with the highest honor that this flag was flown at our nation's capital and is presented to the city of Snellville to soar and wave over our great nation. It serves as a patriotic reminder that all veterans gave some, and some veterans gave all for the cause of liberty.”
“We remain commited to defending the liberties and freedoms it represents, and give special thanks to the armed services,” said Mayor Kelly Kautz during the ceremony.
The American Legion Post 232, Disabled American Veterans Chapter 90, Knights of Columbus, VFW Post 4180 and Boy Scout Troop 553 were all in attendance.
Click through the gallery at the top of this story to see pictures of the day and the Snellville Police Department Honor Guard raise the flag.