BREWER, Maine (WABI) - There are 47 students in the Air Force Junior ROTC program at Brewer High School.
It was a quick photo from a rainy morning last week by a local orthodontist that sparked a social media rally around something the ROTC members do to start every school day.
"Unexpected response from my private page. It was shared over 100 times," said Dr. Anthony Liberatore the Orthodontist at Smile Docs in Brewer. "I put it on my business page, and it was shared another 40 times, so 140 people took the time just to share this random photo of a couple high school kids raising the flag in the rain."
Not only is it part of the daily routine for the members of the flights that raise and lower the flag each day, it has meaning to each of the students as well.
Cameron Cox - Brewer HS Sophomore, Cadet Technical Sgt
"I have a military family," said Cadet Technical Sergeant Cameron Cox a sophomore at Brewer High School and member of the Air Force JROTC program. "So this is respect to them, and my school, to my country and to those I care about. That flag is a symbol of protection and freedom to me."
"It's a lot of fun and I think it's a unique opportunity for students to be out there and representing the school, their community and the nation, it's great," said retired Lt. Col Scott Magnan an instructor with the Brewer Air Force Junior ROTC.
While waiting for people to turn in to school or for the flashing red lights to go off on a bus may be frustrating for many on their morning commute, Dr. Liberatore found the bright spot to his drive. "Every morning I go by Brewer High when the kids are raising the flag and just the best part of my morning, better than a cup of coffee to see those kids out there respecting The Star Spangled Banner, and they do it in the rain and in the snow, and the heat, and it just struck me that morning. I got to put that picture up on Facebook to balance out all the other stuff that's on there."
The cadets, like Cox, know people are taking notice. "Every so often we see people drive by, some people who walk give us salutes as well and it just feels nice knowing that people know the proper respect and having that recognition for doing something for our country."