Photos: Ceremony on the Common Honors Fallen Soldiers

More than 20,000 flags stood for fallen servicemen since World War 1, with 143 representing those who died in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Volunteers, elected officials and family members of fallen heroes gathered on the Boston Common Thursday morning, amid a sea of 20,000 American flags honoring Massachusetts servicemen who lost their lives since World War 1.

One hundred forty three of the flags represented the men and women from Massachusetts who died in support of operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. The names were read aloud during the Memorial Day ceremony, and Gov. Deval Patrick, Mayor Thomas Menino, Attorney General Martha Coakley and other officials addressed the crowd.

"Our flag garden is the stunning result of the simple, grassroots efforts of hundreds of concerned citizens who, on Memorial Day, want to led the families of our fallen heroes know that today and always, we stand with them," said Steve Kerrigan, board president and co-founder of the Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund.

On Wednesday, more than 200 volunteers gathered to plant the flags in the ground (see that photo gallery here.)


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