BY KATHY KANE
Martenson Family of Funeral Homes offers the collection of U.S. flags to Veterans of Foreign Wars posts around town. Annually Martenson’s recycles over 1,000 U.S. flags on behalf of the collection boxes which hold 50 flags each, at various VFW locations around the Allen Park, Trenton and Monroe areas.
The process and tradition of properly retiring an American flag requires finding a disposal location in your area. Your American flag should always be properly retired with the respect and gravity that it is entitled. The retirement of an American flag is a time-honored tradition, and one that carries a great significance. Taking your flag to one of these flag disposal locations will ensure that the traditions and ceremony are utilized in the flag’s retirement.
Here are steps to properly retire your own American flag if you are unable to locate a facility in accordance with the United States Flag Code (4 USC Sec 8 Para (k), Amended July 7, 1976).
- Build a medium-sized fire in a safe, approved location. The fire will need to have reached a proper size and level of heat so it will fully burn the flag without leaving any remnants of the flag intact.
- If the flag is currently flying, respectfully lower the flag and remove it from the pole. Fold the flag in the traditional triangle fold.
- Place the folded flag on top of the fire, being careful to not injure yourself. Watch the flag to make sure it is fully incinerated.
- While the flag is in the process of being burned, observe the flag with respect and reverence.
- While the flag is being incinerated, recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
- Once the process of burning the flag is complete and no part of the flag remains, safely put the fire out completely.
A collection box is currently located at VFW Post 1888 2763 Veterans Pkwy. Trenton, MI 48183. For more information on how to get a flag box collection at your local Veterans facility, contact Martenson Funeral Homes at (734) 671-5400, www.martenson.com or visit their Facebook page.