Honor and Remember Flags presented to Knight family

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The Mineola Rotary Club held a special Veterans Day presentation at their Nov. 11 meeting to honor all veterans present, with special consideration given to Dr. Bill Knight and his family. 

David Caswell, Alaska Chapter director of the Honor and Remember Organization, presented Knight with two flags in honor of his brothers, 1st Lieutenant Jack L. Knight and Col. Roy A. Knight Jr.  

The Honor and Remember Organization is dedicated to the recognition of military fallen heroes and their families, otherwise known as Gold Star families. The organization was born out of grief and sacrifice after Army Cpl. Tony Lutz was killed by a sniper’s bullet while in Iraq. 

His father, George Lutz, created a flag to be recognized as a specific proclamation of tribute to fallen members of the U.S. armed forces who died while serving. Since 2008, over 3,000 personalized flags have been given to Gold Star families at no cost to them. 

The flag is a visual reminder of gratitude and helps promote healing for the thousands of families who want their loved one’s sacrifice to not be in vain.

Each detail on the flag symbolizes an important part of the overall meaning of the flag’s message. The red field represents the blood spilled by brave men and women in America’s military history, who gave their lives for our nation’s freedom. The white border beneath the red and surrounding the gold star recognizes the purity of sacrifice. The blue star represents active service in military conflict. It originated with World War One, but on this flag, it signifies service in all wars from the American Revolution to present day. 

The gold star signifies the ultimate sacrifice of a warrior in active service who will not return home. The folded flag signifies the final tribute to an individual life presented to the family for their significant loss. The flame is an eternal reminder of the spirit that has departed this life yet burns on in the memory of all who knew and loved the fallen hero. The flag is personalized with the hero’s name, date of sacrifice and service location. 

The first flag given to Dr. Knight, sponsored by the Mineola Rotary Club, was in honor of his brother Jack, who died on Feb. 2, 1945 in Burma. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his exemplary courage in battle against the Japanese in World War Two.

The second flag presented to Dr. Knight, sponsored by the Mineola Methodist Church, was given in honor of his brother Roy Knight, who was missing in action on May 19, 1967. He distinguished himself as a sky raider pilot in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. His remains were recovered last year and returned to his family in August.

“I am almost overwhelmed,” said Dr. Knight as he accepted the flags on behalf of his family. As the seventh son and the last one standing, he said he has so much pride in his brothers for what they’ve done. Knight also served in the Army from 1954-56 during a time of peace in Europe.

“These guys knew what it meant to be patriots. They carried out their dreadful duty and responded as good heroes do.” 

He said that although he is proud of those veterans, he wishes we could find a way to avoid wars, but evil does not learn from history. 

“Evil has no eyes and ears, they don’t see, they don’t learn. I’m proud that I live in the U.S.A. that has the resources and the strength and the compassion to deal with evil.”

Knight said he will proud-ly fly the flags given to his family. To learn more about the Knight family and to purchase the novel “My Brother Jack” written by Dr. Knight, go to www.MyBrotherJack.us.

To learn more about the Honor and Remember Organization or to spon-sor a flag for a Gold Star family, visit their website.

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