HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - The City of Hattiesburg held a flag-raising ceremony for the new Mississippi state flag following the results of Tuesday night’s election.
The ceremony was held in front of Hattiesburg City Hall at 8 a.m. Wednesday.
Hattiesburg Mayor Toby Barker made open remarks about how historic the vote on the new flag design means for the city as well as the state of Mississippi.
“For so many in our state, and for many here today, we know this is a day many thought they wouldn’t see,” said Barker. “This year, that moment that so many thought would never come finally broke through.”
Barker expressed gratitude towards the citizens of Mississippi and their courage in being able to make a vote that would make Mississippi better.
“Today, thanks to the people of our state, thanks to the courage of so many, we fulfill our shared destiny in try to path forward towards a brighter, more prosperous, more equal, more compassionate and more true Mississippi,” Barker.
After Barker made his remarks, the Hattiesburg Fire Department honor guard proceeded to raise the new flag to fly above City Hall.
The new flag design will still have to be voted on by lawmakers in January to put it into law to be flown at the State Capitol and other buildings, but Barker said Tuesday night’s vote is a step to a better Mississippi.
President of the University of Southern Mississippi Rodney D. Bennett also made a statement about how he feels about the vote, stating that it will help the state grow and develop on different levels.
“The vote to adopt a new state flag marks a historic moment, one that positions Mississippi for advancing our state’s growth and development at national and international levels,” said Bennett.
Bennett announced in his statement that once the new flag is formally adopted as the state flag by the Legislature, USM will raise the flag along with rising the university’s flag once again at all USM campuses.
The City of Laurel also rose the new flag Wednesday morning in front of the city hall, as well as having the flag fly at the Jones County War Memorial beside the Laurel/Jones County Library.