On Wednesday, a ceremony was held for 889 foreign war veterans to honor the weary Stars and Stripes that have flown over Venture High School for years.
Veterans held a ceremony hosted by the Kootenay County Republican Women’s League to remove the flag and replace it with one donated by Post 889.
KCRWF President Daval Cummings said it was an important symbol to celebrate and inspire patriotism with children.
While handing out copies of the U.S. Constitution to high school seniors last year, KCRWF Americanism Chair Beverly Gennett noticed that the school flag was in tatters of age and wear. Mr. Gennett and Mr. Cummings asked if a new flag could be formally donated to inspire pride and patriotism among the students.
At the ceremony, Post 889 veterans Lou Allert and Jeffrey Broadhead unfurled coffin flags representing veterans, while Kootenay County Sheriff Bruce Mattare led students and staff in pledging the Pledge of Allegiance. stood. Mattare then explained what each fold of the flag represents as the color guard folds the flag for retirement.
“The first fold symbolizes life,” Mattare said. “The second fold represents our belief in eternal life. It was made.”
Mattare continued working through each crease until the final crease was carefully creased into a crisp triangle.
“On the last 13th fold, when the flag is fully folded, the star is at the top, reminding us of the national motto: ‘We trust God,'” Mattare said. .
At the final fold, the veterans saluted the flag and then responded to questions from students in the audience.
“What about flags?” asked one student.
Allert said the flag would be taken to the VFW where it would be ceremonially retired and disposed of by burning it in a large metal box at the VFW post in Coeur d’Alene.
“Why do you fold it into triangles?” asked another student.
“The triangle stands for three-cornered hat,” Broadhead said.
As the ceremony drew to a close, one of the students shouted, “Appeal to America!” Veterans marched out of the gymnasium, followed by members of the KCRWF.
“We’re an education club, so we want to educate,” Cummings said.
Club members encourage active participation of both men and women in local and state politics, and are particularly committed to getting students active in local government.
“We don’t want anyone to vote Republican just because they’re told to,” Cummings said. “I want them to understand why they are still voting, why they believe what they believe, and what the party platform stands for.”