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Ever the patriot, Country Music Hall of Famer Charlie Daniels has recorded a new version of the Johnny Cash-penned recitation “Ragged Old Flag,” and produced a stirring video to accompany it — just in time for Independence Day.

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He is joined on the track by Mark “Oz” Geist, a survivor of the 2012 embassy attack in Benghazi, Libya, and co-author of a book about it, “13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi.” The attack left U.S. ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three others (including two former Navy SEALS) dead following a series of raids. Ten others were injured.


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Johnny’s original version of “Ragged Old Flag” peaked at No. 31 on “Billboard’s” Hot Country Singles chart when it was released in 1974. Peppered with historical references, the song traces the fictional history of a tattered but revered flag flying over a county courthouse from the Revolutionary War through the Civil War, both World Wars, and conflicts in Korea, Vietnam and Desert Sand to its eventual small-town home.

Check out Charlie’s video above, and happy birthday, America!

Phyllis Stark is a Nashville-based entertainment journalist who has been reporting extensively on country music (and loving every moment of it) for more than two decades.
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