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Missoula to Burn Over 1,000 American Flags During Flag Day Celebration

American flags
Photo courtesy of CherryPoint/Flickr

This Friday, June 14, is Flag Day. A day in which Americans commemorate the 1777 adoption of the “stars and stripes” by the Second Continental Congress to be one of our national symbols.

Though not an official federal holiday, Missoula will still get a taste of the Flag Day celebrations.

“We do a ceremony with the American Legions, the VFWs, the Marine Corp League of Missoula and Ravalli County, and all the members of the United Veteran’s Council,” said American Legion Auxiliary Member Susan Campbell Reneau. “The Service is going to be at the American Legion empty ball field, which is where you go if you are going to see the Mavericks, on Tower Street.”

Retired flags will be retired at the service via ceremonial burning. Reneau says that this year there is a larger amount of retired flags than normal because harsh weather prevented the retirement of flags on Pearl Harbor Day.

Many may see the burning of flags as simply a form of desecration, but actually flag burning is required by the U.S. Flag Code circa 1923 which reads, “The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem of display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.”

Missoula’s Flag Day service begins at 7:00 p.m. Friday, June 14 at the American Legioin baseball field near Tower Street.

UPDATE: There are now estimated to be over 1,000 flags in the ceremony. Due to the exorbitant number, any help the public can provide during the ceremony would be much appreciated.

Susan Campbell Reneau

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