Veterans hold flag retirement ceremony

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Members of the Vevay American Legion and the Vevay Veterans of Foreign Wars held a flag retirement ceremony on Tuesday evening at the Switzerland County Fairgrounds.

Veteran Darrell Hansel served as the master of ceremonies for the event; and after American Legion chaplain and VFW Post Commander Paul Schmitt led the audience in prayer; everyone recited the “Pledge of Allegiance” before Hilary Lanman played the National Anthem.

“We as members of the American Legion and the VFW certainly appreciate your attendance patriotism and your attendance this evening,” Darrell Hansel said.

The ceremony featured the “retirement” of each of the colors of the American Flag.

As Darrell Hansel told of the symbolism of each color, a county veteran came forward and carefully placed the individual color in the fire as the color guard and honor guard stood at attention.

“Our flag is a symbol of our country,” Darrell Hansel said. “The blue in our flag stands for ‘valor’, which our ancestors fought and died for in the many battles that have been fought for our country and for which it stands.

“The white stands for the purity of all of our hearts,” Darrell Hansel continued. “It also represents the honor that each of us should allow in all that we do in our everyday lives. The red stands for all of the men and women who have died in the service of our country, both as members of the armed forces, and as everyday citizens.”

Darrell Hansel said that the American Flag has led troops into battle in every conflict since the Revolutionary War.

“We should always value the sacrifices that have been made for that flag, and the country that it represents,” he continued. “We have an old friend here, who has fulfilled his duty to our country. He has become worn and tattered, and we are here tonight to retire him in honor.”

The American Flag that is know to everyone was ‘born’ on June 14th, 1777 – and June 14th is known as “Flag Day”.

Many Switzerland County residents brought flags to the ceremony so that they could be ceremoniously retired with honor.