The National School Boards Association (NSBA) 2013 Annual Conference will display the National 9/11 Flag, the 30-foot flag that was nearly destroyed during the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and subsequent collapse of the World Trade Center in New York.
NSBA’s 73rd Annual Conference is one of the last stops for the 50-state tour of the historic flag, which had hung across the street from the Ground Zero site during the Sept. 11 attacks then was placed in storage. In 2008, the New York Says Thank You Foundation began organizing events around the country where local service heroes help stitch the tattered flag back together using retired American flags, including threads from the nation’s first flag and a piece of the American flag that cradled President Abraham Lincoln’s head when he was shot at Ford’s Theater.
After the NSBA conference, the flag will become a permanent display at the National September 11 Memorial Museum at the World Trade Center.
The tour of the flag is designed to inspire citizenship and national pride and bolster the spirit of volunteerism as well as educate younger generations.
“NSBA and the thousands of school board members and educators who will attend NSBA’s Annual Conference will be honored to have the opportunity to view the National 9/11 Flag during its journey,” said NSBA Executive Director Thomas J. Gentzel. “This historic flag is a poignant symbol of our country’s pride and perseverance.”
Jeff Parness, Founder & Chairman of the New York Says Thank You Foundation, said that the project’s mission is to help teach students about how national tragedies can give the nation hope and a spirit of service.
“This is one of the core tenets of The 9/12 Generation Project which is providing a framework for teachers to educate students about 9/11 through the filter of kindness, humanity, and citizenship that we experienced as a Nation – and as a world – on 9/12,” Parness said. “These positive and uplifting lessons are embodied in the flag and are timeless and universal for educators and students alike. We are honored to share this national treasure with the NSBA before the flag is transferred to its final home at the 9/11 Memorial Museum.”
The museum does not yet have a schedule for opening. After being mired in financial and governance controversies for years, construction was further delayed when Hurricane Sandy flooded the site in November.
For more information about the flag and the efforts to recover and restore it, go to www.national911flag.org.