The American Legion post 13 held a flag retirement ceremony

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JOPLIN, MO – Joplin’s American Legion Post 13 is honoring the American Flag.

Tonight, Joplin’s American Legion Post 13 held a flag retirement ceremony. The legion retired more than 200 flags.

“The proper procedure is to make sure it gets burned and not just thrown in the trash because it’s not garbage.” Says Bob Harrington, Commander of American Legion Post 13.

Monday night on flag day the American Legion Post 13 held a flag retirement ceremony in front of Memorial Hall.

The legion recited the Pledge of Allegiance, fired a 21 gun salute, then played taps before burning the flags.

“It’s a way of honoring our country and it’s a way for us to show true respect to our flag and our country by doing the proper procedure for destroying these flags that are no longer serviceable.” Says Harrington.

He says there’s no time limit to retire a flag.

“It’s actually a visual thing. When you see that it is truly faded in color or it is ripped or tore or the edges are all frayed and shattered from the wind then it no longer represents the nation we want it to represent. Therefore, you should change it down and change it out and to a new flag.” Says Harrington.

One Joplin resident brought her grandchildren to help retire the flags.

“They have been studying some of the civics and they’re very interested two little boys, 9 and 10, and they’re interested in why would you burn the flag. We’ve been teaching them about how to treat the flag respectfully.” Says Crystal Harrington, Attended Flag Retirement Ceremony.

Veterans say incinerating the flag is the best way to retire an old flag.

“I want them to know that this flag is important to us and it should be treated in the right way and when it’s torn or ripped it should be burned up.

The American Legion will let the flag ashes cool for two days then bury them.

If anyone has an old flag they would like to retire, call (417) 782-0013.

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