Amid cherished spaces where memories are no longer being made — for now — America’s flag is not forgotten.
Josh D’Amaro, president of the Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Florida, took to Instagram last week to remind America that the magic of patriotism will never go away.
“While our world looks very different today, one thing endures…the American flag still flies over Walt Disney World,” he wrote.
The national restrictions on travel and gatherings during the battle with the coronavirus mean that resorts and theme parks are shuttered until the recovery begins. But D’Amaro said that whether empty or full, Disney will honor Old Glory.
Disney released a video of the empty park ceremony on YouTube.
“I’m inspired how our Security Cast Members continue to raise it each and every morning at Magic Kingdom while they are on duty protecting the magic. It’s a symbol that we’re still here and will not falter. I hope this inspires you as well. We will be back,” D’Amaro wrote.
He ended his message with a salute to all those who keep faith with Disney and with America.
“Thanks to all our incredible Cast Members who continue to maintain the magic until that day. Until then, please take care of yourselves and your families. We will see you soon,” he posted.
Twitter even lost its cynical edge for a few moments to react to the news.
Red, white , and blue never looked more magical! Thank you for reminding us always that we are all in this together. Working to bring hope to all.
— Ellen Cusack/C-Glass Designs (@cusack1967) April 1, 2020
This is awesome! Thank you from this nurse and her army vet husband ❤ We’ve spent many happy days at WDW and look forward to when we can return. Y’all take care.
— Jane Moore (@savannahjem) April 1, 2020
— Rob Valent (@robvalent) April 2, 2020
Commenters on the Disney Parks Blog also cheered the news.
“That is SO inspiring! I’m a 50 year old who remembers when I snuck and stayed up late to watch TV and watched the Natl Anthem before the networks signed off. Disney would be awesome to do this every morning! We are Americans! My Great Grands all came for the old countryCzech, but they were Americans when they arrived in Chicago,” wrote a commenter who used the name of Kristi.
“Thanks for doing this. It’s a reminder to me of one of my favorite things at DL – the Flag Retreat Ceremony. Always brings a tear to my eye as we thank our service men and women, current and past,” wrote a commenter using the name Rama.
Disney first closed its parks temporarily, but as the coronavirus situation has worsened, it made that shutdown indefinite.
Disney has said that it will continue to pay employees at its parks even when the facilities are closed. The most recent statement from Disney said employees would be paid through April 18, according to People.
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