Valdosta-Lowndes freedom flags pay tribute to the military
The Country Parks and Recreation Authority of Valdosta-Lowndes is hosting the first-ever Freedom Flag Exhibition, honoring servicemen who sacrificed their lives for our nation. 50 flags, one for each state, will line a section of the road through Freedom Park as a temporary memorial. Kelly Hritz, VLPRA program coordinator, said the event has been in the works for months.
“It is an honor and a privilege to set up this type of display,” said Hritz. “We’ve been planning this for a while, and the idea has grown from just flags to flags and signs.”
In addition to the flags, the VLPRA places signs listing the names of every member of the Lowndes County service who was killed in action from World War II. There will also be signs honoring our fallen heroes from Moody Air Force Base, aviators who died while stationed here in Valdosta.
VLPRA director of marketing and public relations Jessica Catlett said staff searched the National Archives and worked with the Moody Air Force Base Historian to locate the names.
“We tried to get names from World War I, but most of those records were lost in a fire,” Catlett said. “But we were able to find more than 100 soldiers who died from all other conflicts since. It was the people of the region who made the ultimate sacrifice. It is really humiliating.
Moody Air Force Base volunteers and VLPRA personnel will place flags and signs on Friday, May 28e before Memorial Day weekend. The display will be open to the public for driving or walking starting May 28e until the week of July 5e.