Stars and Stripes. Old Glory. The Red, White, and Blue. It’s a thing of beauty. It’s been the subject of many a tune from Francis Scott Key to Toby Keith. No matter where you look this weekend in the US, you’re bound to see it waving boldly.

Respect it, because the sacrifice of tens of thousands has given you the right–no, the privilege–of sporting those colors as you wish and allowing you to cook your gluten-free hamburgers and hot dogs this weekend. Betsy Ross sewed the first American edition in 1776, and though it has gained a few stars along the way, it has from the beginning, and does to this day, stand as a symbol of freedom – which is what we celebrate this weekend on Independence Day.

The American flag has been present through some of the iconic photos in American history, like the Marines raising the flag on Iwo Jima during World War II, or the firefighters raising the flag at Ground Zero on September 11, 2001.

You’ve undoubtedly seen those amazing images, and there’s no way we could possibly replicate the raw emotions that those photographs evoke. We at FighterSweep want to do our small part to honor Old Glory, and have put together some of our images of a few of our favorite things: the American flag along with the airplanes and aviators that we respect and admire. Does it get any better than that?

‘MERICA!

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Burner Friday: MA ANG F-15C Eagle

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And what would Independence Day be without some fireworks?

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Enjoy your holiday weekend, FighterSweep Fans!