Ground Zero flag makes appearance at Northampton Fire Department before retirement

Ground Zero flag makes appearance at Northampton Fire Department before retirement
Published: Aug. 8, 2022 at 12:45 AM EDT
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NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -The Ground Zero 9/11 Flag Team was in Northampton Sunday, making an appearance in western Mass. just before the flag’s retirement.

The flag is set to retire on November 2, the anniversary of when it was removed from Ground Zero. Sunday, first responders, bikers and more gathered to reflect and remember.

“Never forget the sacrifices that were made,” said Jordan Lemieux, a retired member of the Holyoke Fire Department.

First responders and motorcyclists braved the Sunday afternoon heat to escort the 9/11 flag team to the Northampton fire department.

The American Flag hung over Ground Zero, a piece of marble from the structure cut into a cross and a log book was escorted to western Massachusetts.

Northampton Fire Chief John Davine said they are grateful for this opportunity.

“We’re really proud to have this flag here and honor those folks,” he said.

The team was placed inside the fire department, giving first responders veterans, and others the chance to honor and reflect on the fallen.

Brian Miller, a veteran who serves as the state chapter director of Honor and Remember had the honor of possessing the team for its Sunday afternoon journey. He shared with Western Mass News that the flag was gifted to the New York Port Authority after the 9/11 attacks. It was flown between where the north and south towers once stood until November 2, 2001, when it was taken down.

“To us and these firefighters, it symbolizes even though there’s brothers and sisters that perished at the Towers or the Pentagon or brothers and sisters from the military that we lost in Iraq and Afghanistan we’re caring and remembering and caring on their memory and showing the public this is what we’re fighting for this is what the military is for this is what we do so we have our freedoms,” said Miller.

“This flag means, I can’t describe what it means to me,” said Jordan Lemieux.

Lemieux was also a part of Sunday afternoon’s procession. He was called to respond to the New York City attack and told Western Mass News it is a day he will never forget.

“What you saw on TV was a mere thumbprint of what it was shocking is the best way I can describe it...The loss of human life not just firefighters police you know just human life it’s unbelievable you can’t describe it,” he said.

The Northampton Fire Department will be in the possession of the flag until 9:00 Monday morning.