Squadron 71 retires over 1,000 flags on June 14.


Gladstone squadron retires over 1,000 flags

Gladstone, MI

August Mattson Squadron 71, Sons of The American Legion, retires 1000 flags

Many Americans fly the flag proudly in their front yards, perhaps on patriotic holidays such as Memorial Day or Independence Day, or even 365 days a year.
Like most things, however, individual flags do have a lifespan. And once it reaches the end of that span, many owners are unsure what to do with the flag.
Rather than simply throwing the flag away or putting it on a shelf, it should be retired via “dignified destruction,” which is exactly what the Gladstone Sons of the American Legion Squadron 71 did on Monday, June 14.
“On Monday, June 14, at 7 p.m., we had a dignified destruction of over 1,000 used American flags that were not serviceable any longer,” said George Maciejeweski, a dual Sons/Legion member representing Squadron 71. “We see too much of flags being set on poles way beyond their normal life. It looks bad, and it makes us veterans feel bad about that.
“People throw them in the garbage and flags should only be disposed of in one way, and that’s in an honorable destruction by fire. We do that once a year on June 14 in a ceremony held at our Veterans Memorial Park.”
Formally known as the “Ceremony for Disposal of Unserviceable Flags,” it was outlined in Resolution No. 440 and passed by the 19th National Convention of The American Legion in New York in September 1937, according to the Legion’s national website. The ceremony has become a Legion tradition ever since.

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