Flag Retirement Ceremony

Submitted by ts on Wed, 09/16/2009 - 14:08

On September, 11th 2009 the United States Flag flying high on the flag pole in front of Landmark High School, in Spanish Fork, Utah was to be retired.  Joe Kelly Principal of LHS, wanted to start a new tradition of retiring the US Flag, so he invited members of  the US Military, the student council, faculty, staff and student body to help retire the flag during a special ceremony.

Trevor Bradford, student body president, spoke first about why we retire the flag, and in the manner that is should be retired.  Jackie Sauter, student council member, spoke about what the flag represents and why it should be retired when it is tattered and worn. Chelsea Charlson, student body publicist, then spoke of the event that happened on September, 11th 2001, and why we should remember this day. 

Howard Bonzo a faculty member that has served in Iraq and is a member of the Utah National Guard, talked  about all the soldiers over in Iraq and what they were doing for our country, and told us how he had the chance to go over to Iraq and protect our country, the flag and everything we stand for.

The US flag was lowered by Corporal Nutters and Staff Sergeant Schmidt both are members of the Army Reserve unit located in Salt Lake City. While the flag was being lowered and raised the student body and invited guest were standing, with hands over their hearts and were silently admiring the work done by these two members of the US Military.  While Nutters and Schmidt tried to lower the flag it got stuck on one of the lights and pieces were ripped off and left behind.

Then with the assistance of Trevor Bradford they folded the retired flag and presented it to Principal Kelly.   The flag will be put in a special case, where it will be displayed for all that enter the school, to view the first flag to fly over Landmark High School.  Then corporal Nutter and Staff Sergeant Schmidt raised a new American Flag, which was president to them by Alena  Samora, Senior Class President.

Once the new flag was put back in place atop the flag poll the student body was lead in the Pledge of Allegiance by Erich Egles, student council member. Principal Kelly was very pleased with how the ceremony went, and how most of student body were quite and respectful while they were taking down the flag and putting the new one up.

Later that day Principal Kelly address the student body, saying how he noticed that a part of the flag got caught on the lights of the flag poll, and how it made him feel,  like the flag didn't want to retire, that it wanted to continue to be part of the LHSS and the wonderful student body. He also mentioned that, "it wanted to stay up and keep going strong."   He told the students how much that this meant to him. And that the flag would be in his office for any one that wanted to come down and touch it, and see it up close.

This is the first year that LHS has done anything of this sort, and now it will be a long standing tradition.  The flag that was retired will be put in a case and put in the cabinets for everyone to see. The students are excited about creating a new tradition for us here at LHS. Although however next time the flag will be incinerated and not put in the case.

By: Tiffany Branin