Five years ago today, this 24th day of November 1997, the U.S. Navy in solemn ceremonies relinquished administration, control and possession of the former Subic Naval Base, after 94 years to the sovereign Philippine government.
Presiding over the ceremony was his excellency, President Fidel V. Ramos,
Present in the historic turnover were:
For the Philippine Government:
Hon. Roberio R. Romulo, Secretary of Foreign Affairs
Hon. Richard J. Gordon, Mayor, City of Olongapo; Chairman, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority
For the United States Government:
Admiral James Kelly, Commander in Chief:
Rear Admiral Thomas Mercer, Commander, U.S. Naval Base Subic Bay, Philippines
Hon. Richard Solomon, U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines
This flag pole originally stood at a height of 94 feet signifying the end of 94 years foreign forces occupied this vast complex . On its mast flies the country's largest free flying Philippine flag. With it soars the dreams, aspirations and capacity of the people and volunteers of Olongapo City and Subic. It symbolizes the emergence of a new Filipino spirit and attitude embodied by commitment, dedication, sense of community and love for country.
On its 4th year, the foundation was raised to a height of 8 feet, representing the 8,000 volunteers who selflessly dedicated themselves to protecting and preserving this mighty facility for the prosperity of their community and the resurgence of respect for the Filipino people and the entire country. Simultaneously, another 18 was added representing the 18 heads of states of APEC member economies.
Today proudly towering at a total height of 120 feet in this historic pedestal of honor, this mighty flag gloriously heralds the new Filipino spirit into the new millennium, for all sea vessels and air crafts of the world flying majestic Subic Bay. To pay homage in triumphant splendor.
This flag and marker is dedicated to all the volunteers who served their country selflessly, to all those who believed, and those who endured through shared visions, shared struggles and shared triumphs.