Feb. 1, 2003 – The Virgin Islands flag, like the United States flag, is flying at half staff in the territory in tribute to the seven crew members who lost their lives when the space shuttle Columbia disintegrated Saturday morning over Texas shortly before it was to return to the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida, from a scientific mission lasting 16 days.
President Bush ordered all federal facilities to lower the U.S. flag.
Lt. Gov. Vargrave Richards, in his capacity as acting governor while Gov. Charles W. Turnbull is in the British Virgin Islands for the weekend, ordered public offices where the territory's flag is flown to lower it to half staff as well.
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