When the United States flag (Old Glory) becomes worn, torn, faded or badly soiled, it is time to replace it with a new flag, and the old flag should be “retired” with all the dignity and respect befitting our nation’s flag. It has been Pack 8’s privilege to be included in a Flag Retirement Ceremony hosted by Troop 8. This Ceremony typically takes place on a weekday evening in October. For the past several years, we have met in a field belonging to the Vaughn family, which borders Mount Zion Baptist Church.
The evening begins with the Opening Ceremony, conducted by Troop 8. Current and veteran service members are invited to participate in retiring the first flag of the evening. The flag is carefully dissected by members of Troop 8 and the pieces given to each service member while the audience is informed of the significance of each step. The service members are then invited to place their piece on the fire and all those in attendance watch respectfully while the flag is incinerated.
At this point, members of Troop 8 and Pack 8 are invited to participate by carrying flags to the fire, tossing them into the blaze, and standing at attention while the material catches fire, then moving aside to make room for the next participant. Once all the flags have been incinerated, the ceremony concludes with the Closing Ceremony and the audience is dismissed.