CASTINE — Rick Leighton, Maine Maritime Academy Class of 1980, a caretaker of the Ground Zero Flag, will be escorted into town by the Castine Volunteer Fire Department and Maine State Police along with the flag and an accompanying marble cross fashioned from debris recovered from the World Trade Center site.
Leighton will ceremonially pass custody of the flag to the MMA color guard who will present the flag at the Regiment’s formation and morning colors at 7 a.m.
The flag has been under the care of John Sullivan, owner of American Eagle and Flagpole Company, of Williamsburg, Virginia.
The flag will fly for at least 9 minutes and 11 seconds while Mr. Leighton presents a short history of the flag and its travels across the United States and around the world.
Following the ceremony, the flag and marble cross will be available for individual or group photographs.
Photos from this event will be included in the historical record of the flag and at the 20th anniversary of September 11, the flag, photos, and documentation of its travels may be handed over to the 9/11 Museum in Manhattan for permanent display.
This is the first time that the Ground Zero Flag will fly in Maine though ceremonies are planned elsewhere in the state. MMA will also be the first state maritime academy to host the flag.