Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Congressman Richard E. Neal joined with Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, Veterans’ Services Director Tom Belton, Deputy Director Joe DeCaro and the Springfield Veterans’ Services Department for the city of Springfield’s annual Memorial Day Commemorative Ceremony with a program and honorary wreath laying ceremony at the Veterans’ Monuments located in Court Square. In addition, the ‘Ground Zero’ September 11th Flag was also in attendance. This is the second visit the ‘Ground Zero’ Flag is making to Springfield. The 9/11 Flag first visited the city in August 2022 for a ceremony at the September 11th Memorial Monument at Riverfront Park.
State Senator Jacob Oliveira, State Representative Carlos Gonzalez, City Councilors Attorney Sean Curran, Jesse Lederman, Justin Hurst, Tim Allen, Kateri Walsh and Lavar Click-Bruck, Sgt. Gumersindo Gomez, the Central High School JRROTC Honor Guard, and many veterans and supporters were also in attendance.
Mayor Sarno states, “The City of Springfield is proud and honored to hold our annual Memorial Day Ceremony. This year we are honored to host the ‘Ground Zero’ Flag again and include this special and historic Flag as part of our Memorial Day ceremony. I want to thank Veterans’ Services Director Tom Belton, Deputy Director Joe DeCaro and the dedicated staff of our Veterans’ Services Department for their continued efforts on behalf of our veterans. We want to acknowledge and honor the memory of our brave and dedicated veterans who gave the ultimate sacrifice to protect the freedoms we enjoy today. Freedom is never free, as we are witnessing with the tragedy in Ukraine. God Bless our veterans and God Bless the City of Springfield.”
The flag was flown between the World Trade Center’s North and South Towers following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, outside the New York Port Authority makeshift office trailer, deployed to Iraq, and flown around the country. It has numerous signatures, and can only be touched by white cotton gloves to protect it from being damaged.