Afghan flag presented to Veterans Committee in Donnie Davis' honor

By Megan R. Harrell
Star Staff
mharrell@starhq.com

   Maj. Tim Hollifield presented the Veterans Committee with an Afghan flag in memory of Master Sgt. Donnie Davis Saturday. It was one of the first flags flown at the Afghan National Training Center, Kabul Afghanistan. The flag was last flown in 1964 under a democratic government.
   Maj. Hollifield made the trip to Elizabethton from the U.S. Embassy Office of Military Cooperation in Kabul where he is currently stationed. The occasion was somber for Hollifield, who attended high school with Davis.
   "I feel some guilt because I am actually here and there is someone else who I knew personally who has made the ultimate sacrifice. I think anyone who survives any kind of combat experience feels that way," Hollifield said. "It is good to see that life goes on, and that Donnie's family is here, and they are in good spirits. There is still a patriotic spirit here in Elizabethton."
   Members of the Veterans Committee, Davis family, and city/county officials attended the ceremony at the site of the new war memorial, Elk Ave. The community support was refreshing to Hollifield after serving in Afghanistan.
   "For me it is encouraging to see that people back in the States are still supportive of what we are doing over there and still supportive of the armed forces," Hollifield said. "We get very little news and there is a great sense of isolation, you often feel that you are forgotten about."
   Hollifield talked about the importance of America's efforts in Afghanistan. Hollifield believes rebuilding the nation is equally as important a task as hunting down terrorists. "I wanted to be there because I feel America in some way contributed to some of the problems that Afghanistan is facing today," Hollifield said.
   State Senator Rusty Crowe (R-Johnson City) made a presentation at the ceremony as well. He presented the Veterans Committee with a proclamation from the state of Tennessee honoring of Davis. It will be placed on the wall of honor at Elizabethton High School.
   "Donnie Davis, Tim Hollifield and others like them care more about the purpose of liberty and freedom than they do their own lives," Crowe said. "Our men do not care just about their freedom, but they care about the freedom of those all around the world. That is what makes America so wonderful."