The Marine Corps League and other military and community organizations help retire US flags. Watch the video to learn more.
When an American flag becomes unfit to fly, flag etiquette rules state that is must be retired. The most appropriate way to retire an old flag is via burning, although burial is another option. If you have a US flag you believe is ready for retirement, check with your local veterans’ organization for they often hold regular ceremonies.
In Loveland, Colorado, the Marine Corps League and US Army recently help their own ceremony. Members of both organizations lined up behind a seven-foot furnace where the old flags were officially burned. During the ceremony, approximately 500 US flags were retired. The city fire department co-sponsored the event.
Terry Willert, senior vice-commander of the Marine Corps League, led the ceremony. He said the League has been collecting flags since September 2008 from two primary drop-off sites – the All Vets Club and Jensen Arms. Since then, they have received over 7,000 worn out US, Colorado, and military flags.
In total, about 50 people attended to ceremony. Willert led everyone in singing “God Bless America” and the “National Anthem,” which was then proceeded by a League member playing Taps on his bugle. League members and military service men traded off placing the flags in the furnace.
After the fire was lit with a propane torch, it burned to over 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit. “The flag also has a beginning, so it has to end. I think younger generations aren’t that respectful of the flag. They just don’t comprehend the true meaning of the American flag,” said one Marine Corps League member.
Credit: Reporter Herald