Congressman presents inauguration flag to NAACP Dayton unit president

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, (left) speaks Friday Nov. 12 with Dr. Derrick Foward, president of the Dayton Chapter of the NAACP. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF
Caption
U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, (left) speaks Friday Nov. 12 with Dr. Derrick Foward, president of the Dayton Chapter of the NAACP. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF

Dayton’s congressman stopped by the offices of Dayton unit of the NAACP with a long overdue gift Friday.

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, presented Dr. Derrick Foward, president of the Dayton unit of the NAACP, with memorabilia and an American flag that flew on the National Mall in Washington D.C. on Jan. 20, 2021, the day President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris were inaugurated.

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Foward is typically among Turner’s guests on Inauguration Day, the congressman explained. But with the pandemic, that wasn’t possible last January.

“They didn’t allow anyone to attend,” Turner said. “And it was an historic inauguration. We had the first African-American female who was inaugurated as vice president of the United States. We were very saddened Derrick was unable to make the trip as a result of COVID.”

The flags were placed on the mall where normally audience members would be found during inaugurations. The flag was presented to Turner, who in turn presented it to Foward and the local NAACP leadership team Friday.

Caption
Dr. Derrick Foward (left), president of the Dayton chapter of the NAACP, with U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, receiving his inaugural flag Friday Nov. 12. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF

Dr. Derrick Foward (left), president of the Dayton chapter of the NAACP, with U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, receiving his inaugural flag Friday Nov. 12. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF
Caption
Dr. Derrick Foward (left), president of the Dayton chapter of the NAACP, with U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, receiving his inaugural flag Friday Nov. 12. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF

With the gift was a photo of the 1,600 flags placed on the mall that day. Foward received flag No. 844.

“You can see the inaugural stage,” Turner said. “I was sitting up here on the right. (Sen.) Bernie Sanders was on the left with his mittens.”

“I will say on behalf of the Dayton unit of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, we appreciate you, Congressman Mike Turner, for thinking about us in this matter and to present us with this prestigious award, as it relates to Kamala Harris, the Kamala Harris, the first African-American female vice president,” Foward said.

While the NAACP is 112 years old nationally, its Dayton unit is 106 years old, Foward noted. Turner became a lifetime member some 10 years ago.

“Thank you for all your work for our community,” Turner replied.

Turner later said he believes that the days of stringent pandemic measures are numbered.

“Our goal when the pandemic first started, we didn’t have any medications to treat it, we didn’t have any vaccines, we wished for any answer that could allow us, that people would not be casualties to this disease,” he said. “With therapeutics, with vaccines, we’re starting down that path now.”

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