140 students will receive citizenship honors for Flag Day

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Local students will be honored today for their citizenship and historical knowledge at the 86th annual Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution Flag Day ceremony at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall and Museum.

Some 140 eighth-graders from 37 schools across the region will gather in the auditorium for the 10 a.m. event, along with family members, teachers and the Allegheny County’s chief executive, Rich Fitzgerald, a father of eight who supports the ceremony each year.

The program is sponsored by the Daughters of the American Revolution and its male counterpart, Sons of the American Revolution, both nonprofit organizations that foster patriotism, encourage the study of U.S. history and celebrate the American freedoms and institutions established by the Constitution.

The Sons will present 70 Good Citizenship Awards to boys and the Daughters will present 70 awards to girls for proficiency in history.

The recipients were nominated by their respective schools earlier this year. William McKim, chairman of the event, said many students fondly recall receiving awards at the ceremony many years later.

"We have people who come up and say, 'I remember receiving an award in 1950,'" he said. "This may be the only time they get recognized for anything."

Pine-Richland's Air Force JROTC will present the colors for the ceremony and a short film on the history of the flag will be shown.

Members of the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution trace their lineage to someone who served in the Revolutionary War or supported American independence.

The male organization, based in Louisville, has 30,000 members worldwide. The female version, based in Washington, has 165,000 members.

Flag Day commemorates the adoption of the U.S. flag in 1777. President Woodrow Wilson established June 14 as Flag Day in 1916.

Torsten Ove: tove@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1510.

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