On a crisp November morning in Knoxville, Tennessee, the flag of the Medal of Honor convention was raised just under the American flag, a symbolic beginning to the role Knoxville will play in the 2014 Medal of Honor Convention. On Friday, November 8, veterans, city officials and citizens gathered to witness the flag raising ceremony in the East Tennessee Veterans Memorial, a solemn monument with granite pillars etched with the names of 6,172 fallen soldiers, all from East Tennessee.
The Congressional Medal of Honor flag is raised in the East Tennessee Veterans Memorial, symbolizing the 2014 Medal of Honor Convention in Knoxville, Tenn. Photo by Nathan Carver.
The ceremony began with a rendition of the National Anthem and opening remarks by Chris Coyne, co-chairman of the Medal of Honor Convention. “We’ve been looking forward to this day for a long time,” said Coyne. “The East Tennessee Veterans Memorial serves as the perfect home for the Medal of Honor flag. This flag is symbolic of so many things Knoxville has the privilege to represent in next year’s convention.”
A series of speeches were delivered, including remarks from the mayor of Knoxville, the mayor of Knox County, and Medal of Honor recipient Walter “Joe” Marm, U.S. Army (Ret.), who shared stories about his U.S. Army and Vietnam War experiences, as well as the important role Knoxville will play next year for the Medal of Honor Convention.
Following Joe Marm’s remarks, two ROTC students from the University of Tennessee presented him with the convention flag. A bugler played taps as the flag was raised above the memorial, where it will fly for months to come.
Medal of Honor recipient Walter “Joe” Marm at the Medal of Honor Convention flag raising ceremony. Photo by Nathan Carver.
Joe Thompson, Medal of Honor Convention co-chairman, also stated, “The flag raising represents the start of the convention. Knoxville is very excited about hosting the convention and we look forward to many exciting events in the months to come.”
This beautiful ceremony was witnessed by Wendy Drake, The Webster Group’s President and CEO, and Deborah Gitelson Krauth, Vice President of Production, who are already working hard along with the rest of The Webster Group team to ensure that the 2014 Medal of Honor Convention is a huge success.