As Betsy Ross (Carole Clarke of the Titusville Pilot Club) delivered the folded American Flag to the American Legion Auxiliary Post One Color Guard, the audience as one stood with hands over hearts or saluted as approriate. While the crowd recited the Pledge of Allegiance, the Flag almost appeared to be alive, snapping in the wind and flying proudly, fully unfurled.
Mayor-Elect Tully, verbalizing the patriotic mood of the crowd, said "Did you know that there have been four Medals of Honor awarded for heroic service in Iraq? Two of those medals were awarded to soldiers who threw their bodies on grenades to save the lives of their friends. They exemplify the fact that when all is said and done, we are willing to fight and sometimes die, for each other. But sacrifice comes in many forms. The sailor who spends months at sea and the soldier, Marine or airman who ensures time away from friends and family in a hostile foreign land--they too sacrifice, and they all take comfort in the knowledge that their sacrifice is the price of freedom. I believe it is something we feel deeply as a nation. And if you walk the decks of the USS Constitution in Boston or the USS Wisconsin in Northfolk, Virginia; if you climb Little Round Top at Gettysburg or walk through the serene silence of the Alamo, you can feel it too. For these places are hallowed ground, once trod by people for whom country meant more than self. It is why we are here today. It is why we must never forget the sacrifice of those who have so selflessly gone before. It is why we are proud to call this America of ours the Land of the Free and the home of the brave. It is Veterans Day. It is a day to remember. It is a day to say a prayer for the brave. It is a day to say God bless America."
As the notes of Taps played mournfully in the breeze, the crowd was united in its reverence--thank you, Veterans.