Troop 1917 retires flags

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  • Boy Scouts Christian Klepper and Devin Carper place pieces of a U.S. flag into a fire Wednesday at The Springs at Whitefish. Whitefish Boy Scout Troop 1917 retired about 75 flags during a ceremony for Flag Day. A flag must be cut into pieces and then burned for it to be retired. (Heidi Desch/Whitefish Pilot)

  • 1

    Senior Patrol Leader Gage Cuthbertson places a piece of a flag into the fire. (Heidi Desch/Whitefish Pilot)

  • 2

    Christian Klepper (facing away), Marvin Kimera, Travis Wirtala, Jarrett Thompson and Devin Carper (facing away) work together to cut a flag into pieces to prepare it to be burned in the fire. U.S. flags must be cut before being place in the fire because when it is cut into pieces it is no longer considered a flag and then can be retired by being burned. (Heidi Desch/Whitefish Pilot)

  • Boy Scouts Christian Klepper and Devin Carper place pieces of a U.S. flag into a fire Wednesday at The Springs at Whitefish. Whitefish Boy Scout Troop 1917 retired about 75 flags during a ceremony for Flag Day. A flag must be cut into pieces and then burned for it to be retired. (Heidi Desch/Whitefish Pilot)

  • 1

    Senior Patrol Leader Gage Cuthbertson places a piece of a flag into the fire. (Heidi Desch/Whitefish Pilot)

  • 2

    Christian Klepper (facing away), Marvin Kimera, Travis Wirtala, Jarrett Thompson and Devin Carper (facing away) work together to cut a flag into pieces to prepare it to be burned in the fire. U.S. flags must be cut before being place in the fire because when it is cut into pieces it is no longer considered a flag and then can be retired by being burned. (Heidi Desch/Whitefish Pilot)

Boy Scouts from Whitefish Troop 1917 took a worn U.S. flag carefully cutting it apart and the placing the pieces in a burning fire.

They repeated the process again until about 75 flags had been officially retired.

In honor of Flag Day last week, the Boy Scouts held a flag retirement ceremony outside at The Springs at Whitefish.

The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem of display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning, according to the U.S. Flag Code.

The traditional method of retirement is to incinerate the flag, but this does not mean that one should simply drop the entire flag into a fire, according to the Boy Scouts of America guidelines for retiring Old Glory.

Boy Scouts are instructed to cut up the flag with scissors or sheers in a methodical manner creating four pieces that are then placed into a fire.

The Scouts maintain a vigil over the fire until all traces of the flag remnants are destroyed. Then, the fire is extinguished and the ashes are buried.

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