13th annual formal flag retirement ceremony comes to Cape May Co - NBC40.net

13th annual formal flag retirement ceremony comes to Cape May County

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CAPE MAY COUNTY -

Flags flying, fire, and freedom were all in the forefront Sunday as the Disabled American Veterans chapter 44 in Cape May County, held their 13th annual formal flag retirement ceremony.

"If we don't do this, nobody else will," says Commander Johnnie Walker. "We do this every year, at the end of October, where we collect and burn 6,000 to 8,000 flags a year," Walker continues.

This event serves as an official retirement ceremony for american flags, as well as an educational tool, informing younger service members and the general public about the history, importance, and symbolism of the american flag.

"We have the official ceremony where we explain the importance of burning a flag, instead of throwing it away," says Walker.

"We're trying to instill this in our younger people that don't know," says Past Commander John Growne.

"We owe this especially to those that are not here no longer," says Walker.

Veterans from wars of yesteryear, and the wars of today, gathered at the Cape May Park to not only retire a flag, but also to pay homage to fallen soldiers.

"I'm army, and I'm proud to do it, very proud," says Growne.

"It's a day filled to be around true American heroes," says Walker.

As well as, passing the tradition of our flag from generation to generation.

"We're handing the flag down from War World II, to Korea, to Vietnam, right down to Afghanistan and Iraq.

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