BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — More than 3,000 flags were retired for Flag Day in Bakersfield. Local leaders and community members came together for the event at Greenlawn Funeral Home Southwest.
Flag day marks the fourth year Greenlawn Funeral Homes partnered with the city to take in old and damaged flags. Flag Day is a day when you can respectfully retire your old and damaged flags.
At Greenlawn Funeral Homes Southwest organizers hosted a ceremony where more than 3,000 flags were retired. That’s double the amount that was retired last year.
“We ended up folding 3,261 flags and we ended up with 12 boxes filled that will be cremated,” Steve Gerber Unit Commander for the Bakersfield Young Marines.
Organizers say the flags represent more than just the country’s colors. It represents the lives that have been laid down to protect our freedom.
“It just touches my heart because it shows me how important this symbol is of value to our community and it shows that people aren’t sure what to do when it’s time to retire a flag so it’s great to help,” Derringer Martinez the managing partner at Greenlawn Southwest said.
The flags were respectfully laid to rest at the crematorium, in front of an audience during the end of the ceremony. Bakersfield Young Marines helped with the ceremony and collection of the retired flags.
“Flag day means it’s honoring the flag when the nation originally adopted it June 14, 1777,” Ethan Guess a Bakersfield Young Marine said. “The flag is considered a living thing and we’re properly laying them to rest.”
“Being a young marine to our community helps strengthen our community by leading by example,” Arianna Gonzales a Bakersfield young Marine said.
If you have an old and used flag you can still hand it over to Greenlawn Funeral Home Southwest. It will retire your flag at next year’s event.