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Americans Celebrate Flag Day

Last updated on Friday, June 14, 2013

(UNDATED) - Today, June 14th, is Flag Day, a federal holiday designed to honor the American Flag and its history. But, what happens when a flag gets tattered and torn and how do you dispose of it?

General Stewart Goodwin, Executive Director of the Indiana War Memorials, says the worst thing anyone can do with an old flag is to simply through it away. Instead, Goodwin says it should be properly returned and burned in ceremony.

Although some people have reservations about burning the American flag and it is a sometimes done in protests and demonstrations, Goodwin says as long as the flag burning is done in respect or in an official ceremony, burning the flag is ok and the preferred method of disposal.

Goodwin says there is an actual ceremony the American Legion teaches to Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and other organizations that is very moving.

The Indiana War Memorial is one of several places the public can drop off a flag that needs to be retired. Goodwin says the flags the memorial collects are given the Girl Scouts to learn how to conduct the burning ceremonies during summer camps.

Goodwin says any American flag that is discolored or faded, torn, or any other structural damage should be retired.

Goodwin adds that as we remember Flag Day, we should also remember the anniversary of our nation's Army which also was created on this day.

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