September 11 Digital Archive






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LC Story: Story

At a Walgreens buying some soda.

LC Story: Memory

The scenes on tv of the jets hitting the WTC.

LC Story: Affects

Shortly after 9/11, after reading of the heroic efforts of the firemen and others, I wrote these song lyrics to honor them and all other American heroes. The song can be heard on my web-site at

What the Flag Means

This song is dedicated to Queens fireman Captain Patrick Brown and all the other heroes of 9/11.

Rob and John were brothers in war.
They charged the beach at Normandy.
Robert fell at Omaha
And Johnny died near Isigny.
Youll find their graves on that faraway shore
They fought to save from tyranny.
And every dawn at reveille
Their banners raised in victory.
See what freedom costs in each marble cross
And what the flag means to the free.

Henry came from a small river town.
He left his home for Vietnam.
Drawn to the flag of a high ideal,
He fought the war nobody won.
One day he forded a wild jungle stream
And there a sniper shot him down
And his lifeblood joined that sacred will
Our fathers forged on Bunker Hill.
Read it in the names on these granite walls:
What the flag means when youre called.

Michael ran like the wind on the tide.
He knew the race went to the bold.
He gained more speed with every stride
Until his shoes turned into gold.
And when he watched on that gold medal day
Old Glory rise, the Anthem play,
The tears came streaming down his face
When he felt that force beyond the grave.
Every freemans life sings their sacrifice-
What the flag means to the brave.

Patrick Brown was a Queens fireman.
He captained ladder number three.
He knew the look of the frightened face
That sought the light of liberty.
That day his crew climbed the North Tower stairs
And all our hopes came crashing down,
There he saw that shining face
Hed spent his whole life trying to save.
You know your job is done when your rescue comes
And your life shines like the sun.

Tonight a storm veils a poor widowed world.
Her lonely tears just fall like rain.
A young man wakes from a troubled dream
And hears a hero call his name.
And as he makes that fateful vow
He knows his life is not his own.
And a new hope lights the starry sea
High above the Land of Liberty.
See the million flights of the Stars and Stripes-
What the flag means to the free.

2002 Mark Heffron


“lc_story170.xml,” September 11 Digital Archive, accessed February 24, 2020,