Flag Toting Volunteer Promotes Patriotism
By Brady Talbert / Staff Writer
An ensemble of American flags will line the streets of many Shelby County roadways on Independence Day, a tradition that some use to display pride for their nation. One of those flags may have a man beneath it, a local man who sports the star-spangled banner, not only on July 4, but year-round.
Roy Brook may look familiar to some, the man who sports a white goatee beard, and can often be seen displaying his patriotism in public. Brook travels the greater Birmingham area simply holding an American flag on the curb of roadways and waving to passersby.
“I do this because I love my county – I’m a patriot,” Brook said while grasping the flag pole. “This is the greatest country in the world, and this flag stands for that,” he said, adding that “I also have a son that’s in the Army, that has something to do with it.”
Brook started this gesture back in 2016, on Memorial Day. “That was the first day we went out, and actually my wife went with me,” he said. Since then, he would travel the streets, find a corner and set up shop. He could “stand on the street corner anywhere, it was all new back then,” but now “I have to try and find different places,” which is why you may see him at local events.
The Birmingham local could have been spotted at Hoover’s Hot Rod Power Tour, an addiction prevention breakfast and at Alabaster’s police appreciation dinner. He has also ventured outside of Birmingham, to places such as Tuscaloosa, Aniston and Sylacauga. “Sometimes I just go out on the street at different times of the day,” an attempt to see as many drivers as possible, rather than “the same people.”
Brook’s mission is to show his appreciation for those who serve, they sacrifice so much he said. “The response is always very good,” simply put, it’s “Something I’ve had in my heart to do.”