On June 14, 1777, the United States officially adopted the stars and stripes. Today, our red, white, and blue flag represents so much for our country, so we celebrate June 14 as Flag Day!
At Give Kids The World, there are a few flags that we hold particularly close on this special day. Like the American flag flown over the U.S. Capitol in honor of our founder, Henri Landwirth.
Henri passed away on April 16, at the age of 91. After surviving Nazi concentration camps during World War II, Henri worked his way to America on a freight ship. He arrived in New York City with $20 in his pocket and little knowledge of English. Soon after, he was drafted into the U.S. Army.
In honor of his military service and for giving over 160,000 children and families their dream vacation, Senator Bill Nelson had a flag flown for Henri over the United States Capitol on April 3. Henri’s flag then came to us at the Village, where a volunteer and military veteran folded it, so it could be placed in a glass case. The flag was then displayed at Henri’s Celebration of Life.
That veteran was Don Carrico, a Purple Heart recipient who served in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War. He has volunteered at the Village for more than 10 years, filling a variety of shifts.
Among his duties in the military, Don raised, lowered, and folded the American flag or the flags of a NATO countries.
“I was very moved to be asked to fold Henri’s flag,” said Don. “Having met Henri in the dinner line at the Village one night, I told him that he was my hero. Henri said to me ‘No – you are my hero,’ with his wonderful accent! A treasure in my heart forever!”
Henri’s Mission Flies On
Henri’s mission is carried out every day by volunteers like Don. The evidence waves in the breeze over Amberville Station. There, you’ll see flags representing the different countries of our visiting wish families. Those families may come from different places and cultures, but they share something in common: They’re here to discover the hope that comes from having fun and spending time as a family.