June 14, 2015
The Character and Spirit of America:
CACI Commemorates Flag Day
"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."
It was an unremarkable resolution passed on June 14, 1777 by the Second Continental Congress, the same body that had declared war on Great Britain and instructed colonists to take up arms against the king. But it created an inspiring national symbol for thirteen former colonies engaged in a life-or-death struggle with one of the mightiest empires in history. Today, we honor the occasion as Flag Day.
The emblem of our fledgling nation has since become known around the world as a symbol of freedom and democracy - and a beacon of hope for the downtrodden and oppressed. It represents the ideals on which our nation was founded, and which brave Americans have defended throughout our history.
From a standard to which colonists rallied in the War for Independence, to "The Star Spangled Banner" of Ft. McHenry, to the flag raised high by five Marines and a Navy corpsman on the island of Iwo Jima in 1945, the American flag has been an enduring icon of liberty and strength.
Old Glory Resurgent
Perhaps most significantly in our recent history, the flag has served to represent the resilience of the American spirit in the face of unimaginable devastation - when thousands of lives were lost in the attacks of September 11, 2001.
In Virginia, after American Airlines Flight 77 struck the Pentagon, the flag was unfurled over the heavily damaged structure during rescue operations. It's not known who thought to do it, but credit is given to Army Maj. Gen. Jim Jackson, then the Military District of Washington commander, for securing a garrison flag from nearby Fort Myer.
In New York City, American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175 crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center, ultimately bringing down both buildings. As hundreds of first responders struggled to rescue survivors and prevent further casualties, Firefighter Dan McWilliams spotted a flag on a boat docked nearby. With two of his brethren, he retrieved and raised it amid the ruins.
In Pennsylvania, United Airlines Flight 93, likely headed to strike the White House, was brought down by courageous passengers who stormed the hijackers that had commandeered the controls. Today, at the Flight 93 National Memorial at the crash site in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, one of the most prominent commemorations comes in the shape of Old Glory.
Indeed, Americans have "rallied 'round the flag" for generations, united in patriotism and love of country. CACI joins all Americans in doing the same each June 14th.
According to CACI Executive Chairman and Chairman of the Board Dr. J.P. (Jack) London, "At CACI, we are proud to serve our country by supporting America's most critical missions with ethics and integrity in all we do. We also revere and honor our flag, America's 'Stars and Stripes' and the symbol of our nation, as embodying the very character and spirit of our democracy and the lasting commitment to freedom, self-determination, and liberty our flag so majestically represents."