Veterans, youth hold flag retirement ceremony

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Citizens were able to appropriately retire worn American flags at an event Saturday afternoon at City Hall.[Bryan Mordt]

Maricopans will have an opportunity to properly dispose of American flags no longer in use 2-7 p.m. Saturday at City Hall, 39700 Civic Center Plaza. The event is presented by the VFW, American Legion, City of Maricopa, Boy Scouts and other local youth groups.

The U.S. Flag Code states the American flag should be disposed of in a dignified manner. Among the approved methods for disposal heavily worn, faded or tattered flags is a flag-burning retirement ceremony.

David Hixon, the commander of VFW post 12043 and First Vice President of American Legion Post 133 in Maricopa, is coordinating the event and explained why such ceremonies are necessary.

“No flag should ever be thrown away,” Hixon said. “People can always drop off a worn flag at one of our posts or the Veterans Center, and we will be happy to dispose of it in the proper manner. If the ends are tattered, or it has faded out or become weather damaged, it should be replaced and disposed of in the appropriate way.”

Hixon said the ceremony will be busy.

“We have about 1,300 flags to retire,” he said. “We haven’t been able to do this the past two years, so the last time we did this was 2019. We’ve accumulated a large number and this ceremony is long overdue.”

He said if citizens have a flag they want to retire in honor of someone special to them, that opportunity will be available.

The event is free, and food and beverages will be available from Coast 2 Coast BBQ and Squeezy Peazy Lemonade.