“The U.S. flag is more than just some brightly colored cloth… it is a symbol of our nation.
“Seven red stripes and six white strips: Together they represent the original 13 colonies that gained us liberty.
“The red stripes remind us of the lifeblood of brave men and women who were ready to die for this, their country.
“The white stripes remind us of purity and cleanliness of purpose, thought, word, and deed.
“The blue is for truth and justice, like the eternal blue of the star-filled heavens.
“The stars represent the 50 sovereign states of our union.
“The U.S. flag should be treated with respect when it’s flying, and it should be treated with respect when it’s being retired.
“The American Creed states, ‘It is my duty to my country to love it, to respect its Constitution, to obey its laws, to respect its flag, and to defend it against all enemies.’
“Therefore, we retire flags with dignity and respect when they become worn, torn, faded, or badly soiled.
“A flag ceases to be a flag when it is cut into pieces with sharp scissors, it should never be torn. We leave the blue field intact because no one should ever let the union be broken.
“Old flags never die, they just get fired up!”
These words were spoken at Boy Scout Troop 414’s flag retirement ceremony on June 22 during summer camp at Fireland Scout Reservation. In May, the troop collected a total of 38 flags to make a grand total of 92 that were properly retired.
Scouts thanked all who donated flags, saying they were surprised to receive so many. They also thanked Dimitri’s Corner Restaurant, Wellington Eagles 2051, and Main Street Wellington for being collection points.
Flags can be donated year-round in the collection box still at Main Street Wellington.
Courtesy photo Richard Friend attends to the fire while Scout Dominic Fannin puts his stripes in.