Thousands of flags wave in Pepperdine University’s fields as a part of its 9/11 memorial. The display is thanks to the hands of volunteers that wanted to show their patriotism and respect for the victims and first responders of the terrorist attacks. Located in Malibu, Pepperdine’s memorial overlooks the Pacific Ocean while the Stars and Stripes flutter in the sea breeze.
Deemed the Waves of Flags memorial, the flags are an annual display at the university. There is one flag for each of the 2,977 victims of terrorist attacks from New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. Every year, the volunteers erect the near 3,000 flags on the Alumni Field along the Pacific Coast Highway.
Fox News captured a few shots of visitors admiring the Waves of Flags memorial.
In the first photo, a man salutes the flags and the fallen of the September 11, 2001 attacks. In another, a mother leads her young son across the field to pay their respects. And in the third, a young girl dressed in her nation’s colors explores the flags. As it appears from the photos, there are several special flags among the Stars and Stripes. It is possible that these flags stand for the nationality of the few victims from other countries.
Instagram users were happy to see such a patriotic display, remarking on the beauty and solemness of the Waves of Flag memorial.
“God bless the land that gave me the freedom that I didn’t have. Thanks America. #neverforget,” one Instagram user wrote.
A resident from the United Kingdom also expressed appreciation for the memorial, explaining that the attacks deeply affected people overseas as well.
“Even in the uk you always remember where you were that day,” they wrote.
Waves of Flags Memorial Began with Students’ Desire to Demonstrate Patriotism
According to Daily News, the Waves of Flags tradition began in 2008 when Pepperdine students saw a similar display elsewhere. Wanting to bring pride and support to their own campus, the students opted to create a memorial of their own. Roughly 175 volunteers join at the Alumni Field to raise the flags on embedded rebar grounded equidistant from one another. Each year, visitors from all over the country come to see the memorial.
“This is a tangible way to celebrate and honor all the lives lost on that tragic day,” shared Associate Vice President and University Registrar Hung Le. Since the exhibit began, the Associate Vice President has volunteered to raise the flags with his family.
“Every year I walk through the display and I am deeply saddened as I think about each flag representing one life, one family with an empty seat at the table,” Le said.