On Saturday, October 12, 2019, the Ground Zero Flag Team will board a Cape May – Lewes Ferry vessel and raise the Ground Zero Flag (Flag & Marble Cross) on the third deck of the MV Delaware while the vessel is underway to Cape May, New Jersey. The ceremony is one of several selected locations to host a special ceremony during Columbus Day weekend as the Ground Zero Flag Team (GZ Flag Team) makes its way north from Williamsburg, VA to New York City.
What: Guests and participants include people that were directly affected by the 9/11 attacks (survivors & family of victims); our Military that served during the Global War on Terror (Families of the Fallen, current and former members of the Armed Forces); and First Responders. During the ceremony, the Ground Zero Flag will fly for a minimum of 9 minutes, 11 seconds of reflection while a moving music soundtrack is heard softly in the background. All participants are encouraged to sign the logbook and add pictures, patches, badges, challenge coins, and other special remembrances.
Where: Aboard the ferry vessel, MV Delaware. The ceremony will take place on the third deck of the vessel while underway to the Cape May Ferry terminal berths. Ferry passengers are invited to participate. The MV Delaware is the first ferry and second vessel to host a ceremony in open waters. The USS Harry S. Truman (CVN-75) was the first vessel to host a ceremony while at sea.
When: Saturday, October 12 aboard the 11:15 a.m. departure from the Lewes Ferry Terminal. The GZ Flag Team convoy will be coming to the ferry from an earlier ceremony at the Air Mobility Command Museum at the Dover Air Force Base. The GZ Flag Team is en-route to Waretown, New Jersey, and interested folks are invited to join the convoy along the way.
Why: The “Ground Zero (GZ) Flag Team” consists of an American Flag that was flown at the site of what was once the World Trade Center Towers in New York City, and a cross fashioned out of marble recovered from what is believed to be the lobby of the South Tower. The Flag was flown both at the Port Authority Police Department (PAPD) Command Center at Ground Zero as well as the rubble of the South Tower for a six week period following 9/11. On November 2, 2001 a larger U.S. Flag, filled with signatures of appreciation and encouragement, was presented to the Rescue Workers at Ground Zero and the GZ Flag was brought back to New Jersey.
The purpose of these “Remembrance and Tribute” ceremonies is to remember the 9/11 Victims and Survivors; to pay tribute to our men and women in the armed services who continue to fight the Global War on Terror; honoring first responders who serve their communities; and to assure all of their families that we will “Never Forget” the sacrifices their loved ones made and continue to make for our great nation. Due to the delicate nature of the flag and the header containing important signatures from as far back as 2001, the flying of the Flag is dependent on weather and wind conditions.