Apache Pilot Robert Purdy of the 101st Combat Aviation Brigade and multiple tours of duty to Afghanistan and Iraq was a special guest at our July 4th Flag-Raising Ceremony this week. During Rob's most recent tour, he requested of Bill Barnes an Arkansas flag to wear during his mission. He described how he had always worn a United States flag under his equipment and that for this final tour, he wanted to take Arkansas with him instead. Bill promptly took the Arkansas flag from the Harbor Marina, which is where they stood during the discussion, and handed it to Rob.
It was with great excitement and pride that Bill accepted the return of this flag on Thursday, July 4th, 2013, from Rob. It had safely been worn on his body during his entire tour of duty - and during his final mission overseas. The flag and this special award pictured were presented to Bill and the staff at Mountain Harbor Resort. Most importantly, having Rob with us in person and back safely with his family on home soil, was the greatest honor of all. It was a wonderful July 4th, made even better with the presence of Rob and all that his service to our GREAT NATION represents to us as proud Americans.