POLO – For those with damaged or worn American flags, there will soon be an official flag drop-off location in downtown Polo.
“A lot of people, when their flags get damaged, they don’t know what to do with it,” said Cynthia Reynolds, a U.S. Army veteran and commander of Patrick Fegan American Legion Post No. 83. this instinct that they can’t just throw it away [because] it’s not okay.
The flag laying location is the Barber Building at 101 W. Mason St. on the Franklin Avenue side. The flags are safe to leave in the building and will be disposed of at a formal flag burning ceremony at a later date, said Reynolds, who owns the building with her husband, James.
“The [U.S.] The flag, when in such condition that it is no longer a suitable emblem to display, must be destroyed in a dignified manner, preferably by incineration,” according to Title 4 of the United States Code.
But there is a specific way to go about burning American flags. The American Legion held a ceremony for the disposal of unserviceable flags in 1937.
“We’ll do it right and it will also be in cooperation with the VFW,” Reynolds said, referring to Polo’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8455. Scout and Girl Scout troops from the area will likely be invited to participate, a- she declared.
A flag drop box dedication ceremony is scheduled for October 22 beginning at 11:30 a.m. The dedication will take place at noon, followed by a demonstration of flag folding accompanied by a bugler.
Hot dogs, fries and bottled water will be sold, and there will be a 50/50 raffle, Reynolds said. All proceeds, including half of the 50/50 raffle, will go to a Uniform Honor Guard Fund, she said. The honor guard is made up of members of the VFW and the American Legion, Reynolds noted.
“The drop box is for flag removal, but we also want to show what the honor guard is doing,” Reynolds said. “We want the community to know these gentlemen show up and then we hardly ever see them unless they’re at a funeral.”
Members of the Honor Guard perform a “solemn duty” but have no desire to be the center of attention, she said.
“They are there to do the duty for the dead and to honor those who served,” Reynolds noted.