Elks Lodge, Boy Scouts performs Flag Day ritual

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Local Boy Scouts perform a flag retirement ceremony at the San Manuel Elks Flag Day Ceremony. (John Hernandez photo)

By John Hernandez

The San Manuel Elks Lodge performed its honorary Flag Day Ritual Saturday, which includes a presentation of the history of the American flag from its beginnings prior to the Revolutionary War through Operation Desert Storm.

Replicas of the various flags were displayed with the help of Boy Scout Troop 822 of San Manuel. The troop is part of the Catalina Council of Southern Arizona.

After all the flags were positioned, everyone pledged allegiance to the flag. The scouts also performed an honorable retirement of a flag ritual.

The flag was cut into three sections, separating the white and red stripes from the Canton (blue with white stars). The 13 stripes represented the 13 original colonies. The red stripes were placed into the fire first. They represented the blood of the men and women willing to die for their country.

The white stripes were then placed into the fire. They symbolize purity and cleanliness of purpose, thought, word and deed. The Canton was then placed into the fire. The stars in the Canton represent the 50 states which will not be separated. The blue represents truth and justice.

After the scouts placed each part of the flag in the fire, they saluted. As they watched the last of the flag burn, a gentle rain was falling. The boy scouts then were treated to some ice cream by the Elks lodge.

See more photos online at http://bit.ly/11vW5cS.

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