The Foxhole in Wilton: Flag Day, time to review

June 14 being Flag Day, this is a good time to review Flag etiquette and facts about the American Flag. It is also known as the Colors, Old Glory, the Stars and Stripes and Ensign (strictly on board a sailing vessel). When the Flag is displayed with other flags, it should either be to the observer’s far left, or displayed at a higher point than any other flag. If the Flag is displayed against a building or in a window, the Union, or field of blue, should be to the observer’s left.

The Flag should be displayed every day; however, it should at the least be displayed President’s Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day and Veterans Day. Only if the Flag is illuminated at night, should it be displayed at night.

The blue field of white stars is called the “Union”. The fifty stars show the fifty states. The seven red stripes and six white stripes represent the thirteen original colonies. The red symbolizes the hardiness and valor of the American people; white symbolizes the purity and innocence of America and blue represents vigilance, perseverance and justice.

Did you know there is a specific ritual to folding the Flag? If you have attended a funeral, or seen it done on the internet or television, you have observed this ritual. The origins of this ceremony are unknown, although some attribute it to the Gold Star Mothers of America, while others believe a chaplain at the Air Force Academy first came up with the following meaning.

The first fold symbolizes Life.

The second fold symbolizes our belief in eternal life.

The third fold honors the veteran who gave a portion of their life in defense of our country to attain peace.

The fourth fold symbolizes our trust in God, both in war and peace.

The fifth fold is a tribute to America, and in relations with other countries, “May she be always right, but is still our country right or wrong” (Stephen Decatur).

The sixth fold is where our hearts lie, when we recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

The seventh fold is a tribute to our Armed Forces.

The eighth fold honors our Mothers.

The ninth fold is in tribute to womanhood, for their faith, love, loyalty and devotion molding those who made this country great.

The tenth fold is for our Fathers, who have given their children to serve this great nation.

The eleventh fold, for our Hebrew citizens, represents the lower portion of the Seal of King David, glorifying the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

The twelfth fold, for our Christian citizens, represents eternity and God the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

When the Flag is fully folded, the Stars are upper most, symbolizing our motto “In God we Trust”.

When fully folded it looks like a cocked hat, reminding us of the soldiers, sailors and Marines who have served our country from before our founding.

Come in to Post 86 to see a Flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol in 2021, folded this way.