The same U.S. flag that hung over the rubble at ground zero in New York after Sept. 11, 2001, flew over the South Sound this week, this time for local police officers and soldiers who have died in the line of duty.
In its first visit to the state, the U.S. Honor Flag was raised in front of the County-City Building in Tacoma on Tuesday. The ceremony lasted about 15 minutes.
A day earlier, the law enforcement and military communities raised the flag at the Lakewood Police Department. Lakewood lost four officers – Sgt. Mark Renninger and officers Tina Griswold, Greg Richards and Ronald Owens – when they were gunned down by Maurice Clemmons in a Parkland coffee shop Nov. 29. Less than a month later, Pierce County sheriff’s deputy Kent Mundell died from gunshot wounds he suffered while responding to a domestic violence call near Eatonville.
The flag is dedicated to the men and women who sacrifice their lives to protect their communities and country, according to www.ushonorflag.org.
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Officials in Lakewood also raised the ceremonial flag to honor soldiers at Joint Base Lewis-McChord who have lost their lives.
After Monday’s ceremony, officials moved the flag to the Lakewood Police Department lobby, where members of regional law enforcement, fire service, Department of Corrections and military stood watch for almost three hours.
After its Tuesday appearance in Tacoma, the flag traveled to Lewis and Grant counties before appearing at the Seattle Mariners game. It is scheduled to leave Washington today.