FDNY'S Flags Back from Battlefields



Updated: 07-08-2005 11:02:25 AM



PATRICK GALLAHUE
Courtesy of New York Post


July 8, 2005 -- New York's Bravest gave an emotional salute to Old Glory yesterday as four flags returned home from tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Fifteen flags had been presented in 2002 by members of Brooklyn's Engine Co. 230 and Chicago firefighters to combat-bound U.S. troops on behalf of rescuers killed on 9/11.

Marine Lance Cpl. Matt Sevald, 22, of Detroit, said that being able to present the four flags "reaffirms my commitment to what we're doing in Iraq and Afghanistan."

Pat Tuohy, a firefighter with Engine 230 and a Coast Guard reservist, said the flags had been given to soldiers "to remind them what they are fighting for."

"The flags are now safely back in their homeland," said Lt. Joe Minogue of the FDNY's ceremonial unit. "Thank you guys for bringing them back."

The flags went through combat tours in the Middle East with Navy SEALs, Marines and sailors.

The 11 others are still with various units.

Chicago firefighters participated in the ceremony because the two departments became close after the Windy City's smoke-eaters raised $800,000 for 9/11 widows and orphans.

"Today's events in London demonstrate the war on terror is active and ongoing," said Capt. John Stark, whose firefighter brother, Jeff, was killed at the World Trade Center.

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