Major League Interviews
Rick Monday saves the flag
30th Anniversary of Flag-Burning Rescue
It need not matter if you were a baseball fan or not. For what transpired on the afternoon of April 25, 1976 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles was a moment that united Americans throughout the country.
At a time when the United States of America was celebrating its bicentennial, two protestors jumped onto the field and attempted to use the Dodger Stadium outfield as a political stage in which to burn the American flag.
With a lighter fluid and matches in hand, the protestors unfurled the flag and lit a match. The wind blew out the first match. As they tried to strike another, RICK MONDAY, then the centerfielder for the visiting Chicago Cubs, raced from his position, grabbed the flag and continued sprinting to the infield where he handed it over to Dodger pitcher Doug Rau.
This moment and the symbol it represented freedom, history and those who have lost their lives in battle to save Old Glory had countless Americans talking; from politicians in Washington, D.C. and throughout the country to military veterans to everyday people.
It was ranked as one of the top 100 classic moments in baseball history by the National Baseball Hall of Fame committee and third on Sporting News list as the most unusual moment to occur on a major league baseball field.
IT'S YOUR TURN TO EXPRESS WHAT THAT MOMENT MEANT TO YOU AS A CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
* Were you at this game in Los Angeles?
* Were you, your children or friends in the military - or a veteran of the armed forces - when this occurred?
* If you were a new citizen of the United States, or visiting America at the time, what message did this moment send to you?
* Or, were you then - and remain - an everyday American who bleeds red, white and blue?
A special book is being written about this moment and the impact it had on American society in a more innocent time. This is not a book about baseball, though America's pastime, obviously, plays an iatrical part in the setting.
As an American, your thoughts are needed for this book.
* What went through your mind when you heard or saw this flag-burning incident?
* Did it change your life or your view about the United States?
* Did it have a special effect, or trigger a special event, for someone you know?
Regardless of the scenario, your comments are welcomed.
Feel free to share your thoughts in 500 words or less, and photos (if you were at the game or you are a veteran), and send them to email@example.com or MVPSPORTS, 505 Beachland Blvd., Ste. 1-220, Vero Beach, FL 32963. Please include your name, address, telephone number and e-mail address.
By sharing your thoughts and photos (sorry, items can not be returned), you give the writer permission to print your name and material. All entries are subject to edit.
Dodger announcers Rick Monday & Jaime Jarrin