Local military group holds flag retirement ceremony for Flag Day

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June 14, 1777…The day the United States adopted the American flag. Fast forward 241 years later and we continue to dedicate this day to honor our flag, even if it means properly retiring it. 

Over time, flags can get old and weathered, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to throw it away.

Members of the Trumble American Legion Post 442 in Horseheads suggest to put it in a flag drop to collect for the annual retirement ceremony every Flag Day. 

“Drop the flags in, and when it gets full, we take them out and store them in our shed until the 14th of June and we do a proper way of burning flags with our Scouts and all of the members of the club here have a nice little ceremony out front for this,” Charles Hamilton, second Vice Commander of the American Legion, said. 

Wallin Insurance Agency held a Flag Day celebration for the community with a flag drop-off available. 

“I had an old flag to retire, they gave me a brand new one. It needs to be respected, if it’s tattered, it needs to be retired. This was a dirty, ripped up flag, it has to go. They have a ceremony and retire it properly. You don’t just throw flags in the trash,” David Gilbert, a Desert Storm Navy Veteran, said. 

And that ceremony is being held tonight at the Trumble American Legion Post 442 where they will burn the nearly 3,000 tattered flags they’ve collected for retirement since last Flag Day. 

“Most people, as we get closer to the 14th of June, will bring them in, but we have them dropped off at all times of the year,” Charles Muller, Commander of the American Legion, said. 

Members of the American Legion encourage people to bring retired flags to drop boxes in their area in order to properly dispose them. 

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