Ohio Flags of Honor Foundation Announces Schedule of Events to Honor Ohioans Killed in Action in Iraq and Afghanistan

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The Ohio Flags of Honor Foundation was recently created with the support of Ohio's KIA families. The foundation seeks to honor Ohioans who gave the last full measure of duty and devotion to community and country while also assisting the state's veterans community.

Ohio Flags of Honor Foundation Chairman Andrew B. Leavitt announced the schedule of events for the foundation’s upcoming remembrance of Ohioans killed in action (KIA) in Iraq and Afghanistan on Wednesday, November 9 through Friday, November 11, 2005.

The foundation will host a private event with Ohio KIA families at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, November 9, 2005. This historic event will take place in the Ohio Statehouse atrium and will include a special presentation in honor of Ohio KIAs at 6:30 p.m.

“It is fitting that the foundation’s launch and remembrance of Ohioans who gave the last full measure of duty and devotion to community and country in Iraq and Afghanistan coincides with tributes to our recently returned military units and our state’s veterans,” said Foundation Chairman Leavitt. “Millions of Ohioans have served with honor and distinction in our nation’s military and many have given their lives on foreign shores to protect our freedoms, liberties and way of life here at home. The Ohio Flags of Honor Foundation exists to ensure that, like ‘Old Glory’ itself, the memory and understanding of the service and sacrifice of these brave men and women endures in perpetuity and for all posterity.”

Leavitt continued, “as citizens of this great state and nation, we each owe a tremendous debt to all of our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and coast guardsmen, especially our fallen and their families. We are, therefore, duty-bound to honor and assist these patriotic and selfless citizens as much as possible. The Ohio Flags of Honor Foundation is committed to this charge.”

Also on Wednesday, November 9, Marines attached to the recently returned Lima Company, 3rd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment along with Ohio KIA families, veterans and volunteers will post 354 dedication flags at Columbus City Hall, 90 West Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215. This undertaking, which will begin at 8:00 a.m., will include the posting of 103 Ohio Flags of Honor in remembrance of those Ohioans who have died in military service in Iraq and Afghanistan. Beginning at 4:00 p.m. that afternoon, members of Lima Company wearing full combat gear will serve as sentries at the entrance of the display and will stand the post around the clock until midnight on Friday, November 11, 2005. After a private remembrance of and tribute to their loved ones by KIA families, the Ohio Flags of Honor memorial will be open to the public beginning at 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, November 9. The LeVeque Tower—a skyscraper in downtown Columbus—will be lighted in red, white and blue in honor of Ohio’s KIAs on the evenings of November 9 through November 11.

On Thursday, November 10, the Ohio Flags of Honor Foundation will host a public dedication at Columbus City Hall at 10:30 a.m. and announce the launch of a statewide tour beginning on January 1, 2006 with the support of the American Legion Department of Ohio and other veteran organizations, businesses and individuals throughout Ohio.

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Editor’s Note: Members of the media wishing to attend the November 9, 2005 private reception may contact Thomas J. Ratcliff at (202) 575-0005. Military personnel are requested to wear full-dress uniform at these events, and citizens wishing to make a donation in support of the foundation may call (800) 797-3524 or log onto http://www.OhioFlagsofHonor.org.

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Thomas J. Ratcliff