Faded and Torn American Flags Retire

Sailors from amphibious dock landing ship USS New Orleans (LPD 18) joined members of the American Legion, Boy Scouts of America and Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps to help lay to rest faded and torn American flags during a flag retirement ceremony in San Diego, Nov. 22.

New Orleans’ Sailors provided the color guard service during the ceremony, rendering honors while the American flags were placed into the ceremonial flames.

According to theĀ U.S. Code:

the flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.

During the ceremony the color guard marched ahead as Sherry Hill, the commander of ceremonies at the American Legion Post 434, asked that the unserviceable flags be brought forward for final inspection.

Hill said:

These flags have become faded and worn over the graves of our departed comrades and the dead Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen of all our nations wars.

After the final inspection a prayer was read and all active duty, retired service members and guests in attendance carried a flag to the burn yard where the flags were honorably retired.

Hill added:

To a clean and purging flame we commit these flags, worn out in worthy service.

Those in attendance saluted the flags one final time before being placed in the fire.

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Press release, Image: US Navy

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