Local group commemorates Flag Day with flag burning - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Local group commemorates Flag Day with flag burning

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DYERSVILLE (KWWL) -

Tuesday marks Flag Day all across the United States.

Locally, one group is observing Flag Day with a flag burning.

The American Legion Post 137 in Dyersville holding a ceremony, burning nearly 500 flags in a tradition that goes back further than any of them know.

But there's nothing disrespectful about what they're doing.

"Flags get torn, soiled, they get faded and so forth, because they're out in the weather. So when our flag becomes unserviceable, we, in a dignified way, destroy it by burning it," said Tom Lucas, an Air Force veteran and the commander of American Legion Post 137.

They serve as a drop off spot year round for those wanting to respectfully get rid of their worn flags.  It's something they take very seriously.

"It's a big responsibility, because the community expects us to do this, and they give us their used and worn out flags in good faith, knowing that we will respectfully and honorably destroy them by burning."

The Legion is joined by the Sons of the American Legion, who handle the actual burning portion of the ceremony.

It's a big deal for them that people distinguish their honorable actions from the flag burnings that so often take up TV time.

"It's very important. It's just unbelievable what some people are doing, burning flags in a disrespectful form. It's heart wrenching, is what it is," said Jeff Scmitt, vice commander of the Sons of the American Legion.

Despite the rain Tuesday, the Legion held the full ceremony and burned most of the flags.

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