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Flags lowered Friday for Michigan man killed in Iraq

Aug. 23, 2007

KALAMAZOO--By order of Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm, U.S. flags on all campuses of Western Michigan University and throughout Michigan will be lowered for one day, Friday, Aug. 24, in honor of Army Chief Warrant Officer Christopher C. Johnson of Grandville, Mich., who died Aug. 14 while on active duty in Iraq.

Johnson, age 31, died in Al Taqqadum, Iraq, from injuries suffered when his helicopter crashed. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 52nd Aviation Regiment, Task Force 49, Fort Wainwright, Alaska.

In December 2003, Gov. Granholm issued a proclamation requiring U.S. flags to be lowered to half-staff throughout the state of Michigan and on Michigan waters to honor Michigan servicemen and servicewomen killed in the line of duty.

Michigan was among the earlier states to honor its fallen sons and daughters by lowering flags. More than 20 states now follow the practice in some form, including Alaska, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, South Dakota, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

Media contact: Thom Myers, (269) 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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