On September 11, 2001 our country was hit by an attack that would change our lives forever.
On that day our club lost a member Brian Bilcher a
firefighter from squad 1 FDNY
The following is a brief history of
"The Stars & Stripes Across America Tour"
In the summer of 2002, about 3000 Corvette owners drove their Corvettes across America carrying American flags bound as gifts for the Pentagon and New York City.
The object of the tour was to raise money to be used for replacing equipment that was lost on September 11, 2001 in NYC and to present the City with American Flags that were donated by People, Cities, and Towns from all across America.
The Tour began on June 20, 2002 in Blaine, Washington State at the Canadian Border. The routes took us through small Towns and big Cities all across America. The converging points were in Oklahoma City, OK, Bowling Green, KY, and the Pentagon in Washington DC. The northern route also paid it’s respects at the crash site in Shanksville. PA.
Gathered along the way were seven flags that had flown over the Capitol building in Washington DC and certified by the United States Congress for the Stars & Stripes across America event. There was a flag from Texas, certified by the Texas State legislator. There were flags from Canada, the Netherlands, and Great Britain that were mailed to us.
On the morning of July 3, 2002 we met at the Pentagon and presented a flag to the assembled dignitaries. The Pentagon’s Military then gave us This Flag to bring with our others, to be given to the People of New York City as a show of their support.
The afternoon of July 3, 2002 the caravan of corvettes arrived in Staten Island NY to be welcomed at a large party hosted by The Richmond County Corvette Club.
The event was held at the Hilton hotel where representatives from the Mayors office as well as the NYC Fire and Police Departments were in attendance along with the corvette owners from across the country.
On July 4, 2002 the last leg of the journey started, lead by our club and the organizers from other parts of the country. The drive ended in Manhattan at "Ground Zero" where the World Trade Center once stood.
We presented all of the flags and other items such as the hundreds of Police and Fire Department Patches that were given to the Tours participants and included in the presentation to New York City. We also collected monetary donations that we gave to the NYPD K9 Units and the FDNY Hazmat Fund in New York City.
At the July 4th presentation, we agreed to take the Pentagon Flag back on temporary loan and to display it at the national Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, KY. The Museum prominently displayed this Flag along with pictures and a map of the Stars & Stripes Tour.
We now present this American Flag as a permanent gift to the people of Staten Island so they may display it at Borough Hall and know that all of us, as fellow Americans, share their loss.
RUDY REGELIN JACK PALLY
National Tour Director, NY State Tour Director,
Stars & Stripes across America Stars & Stripes across America
The Richmond County Corvette Club
For more pictures from this event, please see the 2002 section in our picture page,
and also see the followup flag ceremony in our 2004 pictures page.
~A Letter from the Mayor of NYC~
Labor Day weekend 2002, the flag pictured above was presented to the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green. The flag is on loan from NYC to the museum for one year.
The inscriptions on the flag box read....
This flag was flown over the Pentagon and delivered to the Stars and Stripes Corvettes Across America Delegation on July 3rd, 2002 for presentation to the Mayor and Citizens of New York City on July 4th, 2002.
This flag is presented on behalf of the Uniformed Service Members, Government Civilians, and Contract Employees of the Pentagon as a symbol of the unity in memory of the victims of the attacks of September, 11, 2001.
Richmond County Corvette Club, Inc. P.O. Box 60456 Staten Island, New York 10306-0456
Club Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
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