Post 555 initiates rewards program on Flag Day

The first official flag team of the American Legion Matthew Blount Post 555 performs a retirement ceremony for Covenant Classic School and Daycare’s aged American flag June 14. (Reporter photo/Jessa Pease)

The first official flag team of the American Legion Matthew Blount Post 555 performs a retirement ceremony for Covenant Classic School and Daycare’s aged American flag June 14. (Reporter photo/Jessa Pease)

By JESSA PEASE / Staff Writer

PELHAM— To commemorate National Flag Day and initiate its flag rewards program, the American Legion Matthew Blount Post 555 hosted a flag retirement ceremony at Covenant Classic School and Daycare June 14.

The first official flag team of the Post 555 incorporated music as they retrieved the tattered old American flag from the school, properly folded and retired it and flew a fresh, new flag while the children of the daycare center watched.

“We want the community to know we exist, and we try to promote patriotism,” said Post 555 member Kenneth Paschal. “So instead of flying a worn flag, you can go through our flag rewards program. What a great place to start with our daycare and preschool students.”

The students at Covenant Classic School and Daycare witnessed the true military ceremony for flag retirement on National Flag Day.

The students at Covenant Classic School and Daycare witnessed the true military ceremony for flag retirement on National Flag Day.

The daycare students came to school clad in red, white and blue to promote patriotism during the ceremony, and President-elect of the Exchange Club of Shelby County, Coni Fievet-Crawford, handed out miniature flags for them to wave.

The program the children experienced is one most do not have the pleasure of witnessing, according to Paschal. He said the ceremony incorporating music and the flag team is usually only something individuals experience in the military.

“For those kids to experience something that such a small percentage of even adults (get to) experience was great,” he said.

The flag rewards program was started as a way to partner with the community to encourage them to participate in patriotism, Paschal said. Any business, individual or organization in need of a replacement flag can go through the Post 555 website and order one.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit the efforts of Post 555. Post 555 also offers a flag detail to exchange participates’ flag with their newly purchased flag and properly depose of the worn flag. The flag team was formed to help encourage people to replace worn or tethered flags.

For more information, visit Alpost555.com or email commander@alpost555.com.

“I would like to thank the planning committee of the American Legion Matthew Blount Post 555 and the Covenant Classic School and Daycare for holding this special and historic event,” said Post 555 member Frank Lakotich. “Let us all continue to honor our flag and our freedom.”