Just hours after the World Trade Center buildings came crashing down, three New York firefighters raised a small flag -- commandeered from a yacht -- over the wreckage.
After that, the flag was hoisted at New York's City Hall, flown at Yankee Stadium, run up over U.S. warships and was once destined for the Smithsonian. Trouble is, it wasn't the actual flag shown in the photo at left.
According to USA Today, the 3 foot-by-5 foot flag has been missing for 5 years and nobody knows where it went. In fact, the much-traveled larger flag actually flew at the WTC site, too, but later.
What happened to the first one?
Nobody knows. The three firemen have declined interview requests over the past five years. But in the book, "Watching the World Change," firefighter Billy Eisengrein says while working at Ground Zero a few days after 9/11, he noticed the flag was gone.
It's a piece of Americana. Unfortunately, so is eBay.