Interesting post. My cadets, in conjunction with the local VFW Post
(the old vets are getting to old to do it on their own) decorate the
local cemeteries here in Clarksburg the Friday prior to Memorial Day,
and we take all the flags down the weekend after Memorial (usually
our last official cadet function for the school year). This way the
veterans are remembered on Memorial Day, but the cemetery maintenance
crews can do their normal maintenance work the rest of the summer.
Over the past 9 years the kids have been compiling a roster of all
the veterans, known to be buried in our cemeteries, to insure that no
one is missed. Its tough to get the all (this year we placed over
3,700 flags here in town and we have Veterans from the Revolutionary
war forward), and a lot of vets graves are not marked in any way to
indicate their veterans status.
We remove the flags not only for maintenance purposes but also that
the flags do not become overly weather worn and unservicable.
--- In civilwarwest@y..., David Kowalski <kywddavid@y...> wrote:
> You would think that the Catholic Church has enough of
> a public relations black eye in Massachussetts and
> elsewhere not to risk another brouhaha. Guess not.
> It's a shame as the ongoing mission of the institution
> seems to be lost amidst the pettiness.
> --- lilsteve68@a... wrote:
> > Here is a Article that came across through email
> > news letter I get and below
> > it reponse to it from someone who is a SCV member..
> > This is a sad day for all service men who gave their
> > life for this
> > country...
> > I remain respectfully, your most obedient servant.
> > Steven N. Cone
> > ==============================================
> > Friday, August 30, 2002
> > Flags removed from cemetery
> > By GEORGE GRAHAM
> > WESTFIELD, Ma -- Workers from the Roman Catholic
> > Diocese of Springfield
> > began removing American flags from the graves of
> > veterans at St. Mary
> > Cemetery this week. Peter Vickery, a lawyer
> > representing veterans who want
> > the flags left on the graves, filed an emergency
> > petition with the state
> > Supreme Judicial Court yesterday seeking to restore
> > an injunction prohibiting
> > the diocese from removing the flags and flagholders.
> > "This is really devastating," Larry Black Wolf, a
> > Westfield veteran, said
> > yesterday. "Where is the justice system when we need
> > it? Something is
> > terribly wrong here, and we are trying to rectify
> > it." Black Wolf said the
> > flag removal is especially jarring because it comes
> > so close to Sept. 11.
> > The diocese's action follows a state Appeals Court
> > judge's decision earlier
> > this month to vacate Hampden Superior Court Judge
> > Peter A. Velis' preliminary
> > injunction prohibiting the diocese from removing the
> > flags.
> > Joseph M. Kostek, director of cemeteries for the
> > diocese, said yesterday it
> > will take about two weeks to remove the flags and
> > flagholders. Vickery of
> > Amherst said he hopes to get a hearing scheduled
> > next week with the Supreme
> > Judicial Court.
> > "We have to show there are exceptional circumstances
> > and that we don't have
> > any alternative," Vickery said.
> > The dispute over the flags, which began in the
> > spring, pits veterans who have
> > long displayed American flags over veterans' graves
> > all season long at the
> > Southampton Road cemetery against the Springfield
> > diocese.
> > The diocese took over maintenance of the cemetery in
> > March and is seeking to
> > limit the time and manner in which the flags may be
> > flown. Veterans are
> > fearful that the flagholders, which bear information
> > relevant to each person
> > commemorated, will get jumbled or lost, Vickery
> > said.
> > Some of the flagholders are very old and commemorate
> > Civil War veterans,
> > Vickery said. But Kostek said yesterday the diocese
> > is carefully mapping out
> > the 1,600 sites where veterans are buried and
> > tagging each of the flagholders
> > so each can be returned to the proper grave.
> > The diocese will inform the veterans in writing that
> > the flags and
> > flagholders are being taken down, Kostek said. The
> > veterans, Kostek said,
> > will have the option of storing the flags and
> > flagholders on cemetery
> > premises or elsewhere.
> > Under diocese rules, which are imposed on all the
> > cemeteries that the diocese
> > maintains, flags and their holders will be allowed
> > on veterans' graves for
> > one week before and one week after Memorial Day and
> > Veterans Day.
> > =========================
> > We have been fighting many cemeteries and
> > organizations which have made
> > it their policy to only allow the Confederate Flag
> > to be flown over our dead
> > on certain, limited days. Now they are making that a
> > policy for US Veterans
> > also. If this is allowed to stand then our fight is
> > lost before we even
> > begin. This is wrong. Our veterans, all of them,
> > gave themselves for their
> > countries. They have earned the right to have their
> > flags flown over them 24
> > - 7 if their families so wish.
> > When we go to fight to have our flags flown
> > over our Confederate dead
> > we will be told that we have no argument. They
> > restrict the US flag over US
> > Vets also. Now, those of us with ancestors who have
> > fought in all the wars
> > since the WBTS will be told that we cannot fly the
> > US flag on their graves
> > either.
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