2005-07-08 / Community

Fly The Flag, Tie Yellow Ribbons: Welcome The Wounded Warriors

By Brian Magoolaghan

Organizers of this week’s Wounded Warriors event in Rockaway are urging residents to display their American flags and tie yellow ribbons in a show of support for the brave visitors who were severely injured in combat in Iraq or Afghanistan.

“We want to show [the Warriors] that Rockaway is very thankful as a community for the work they’ve done to preserve our freedom,” said Rita Mullen, whose husband Flip has been instrumental in bringing the men and women – and their families – to the peninsula for a sample of the Rockaway lifestyle.

Meanwhile, Belle Harbor could become the yellow ribbon capitol of Rockaway thanks in part to the Dragon’s Den Florist and members of the PS 114 community. More than 400 ribbons were tied on trees in the community in time for Memorial Day.

Gerry Magee, a school parent who got behind the yellow ribbon project, said she would have Rita and Flip Mullen’s block decked out by the end of this week. Magee still had dozens of ribbons on hand, which were all hand-tied by Toni Ann Geraci, a fellow teacher.

The durable outdoor ribbon was donated by Dragon’s Den owner Harold Graham – an act of patriotism and generosity that came only six months after his business suffered devastating losses when the pipes froze in the Beach 116 Street building that houses his business.

The Warriors are scheduled to be out on Jamaica Bay water skiing, fishing and scuba diving beginning Friday, July 8. A fundraiser and parade will take place on Beach 134 Street Saturday evening, after a full day on the bay. The Warriors will play on the bay and visit the Breezy Point September 11 memorial Sunday, before heading back to Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, D.C.

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