Letter: How to Properly Retire Old Flags on Flag Day

Medfield Veteran Service Officer Ron Griffin writes in to discuss the topic of Flag Day.

Flag Day, neither a federal nor state holiday, is still celebrated throughout America on June 14. 

That celebration is the least commercialized and occurs quietly as citizens usually just display their flag. Our president will issue a proclamation encouraging all citizens to fly their flag all week as National Flag week.

There are some celebrations, perhaps one of the oldest being in nearby Quincy.  They have been celebrating Flag Day for 60 years. So if you’re so inclined, head over to Quincy on the evening of June 16 for a parade followed by fireworks.

Perhaps my favorite Flag Day quote on America's iconic symbol comes from Franklin Knight Lane, who was Secretary of the Interior from 1913 to 1920" 

"I am whatever you make me, nothing more. I am your belief in yourself, your dream of what people may become ... I am the clutch of an idea, and the reasoned purpose of resolution.  I am no more than you believe me to be and I am all that you believe I can be.  I am whatever you make me, nothing more."

Also, Flag Day is a time to retire old flags, yes retire rather than discard. Flags should be burned and the American Legion has been conducting Flag retirement ceremonies for many years. Boy Scout troop 89 also participates along with the Sons of the American Legion. 

If you have a flag in need of retirement, you can bring it to the American Legion Post, drop it off at Wills Hardware or leave it with me at Town Hall. 

Should you wish to display the American flag, do so properly and with respect.  There are some rules; there is even a flag code. Google “Flag Code” and you can review how to properly display your flag.


Ron Griffin
Medfield Veteran Service Officer


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