Happy 4th of July! Here’s the scene at 18 Bulkley Avenue South. Monica Ryan and her family decorated their front door this way — and added plenty of bunting, pinwheels in the yard, flags in the driveway, and sparkling lights at night.
Last year, historian Bob Weingarten wrote a story for Greens Farms Magazine, about flags in town.
Three caught my eye. May they continue to wave proudly!
Artists Walter and Naiad Einsel designed Uncle Sam and Miss Liberty, flanking the Stars and Stripes.
Little Barn, on the Post Road.
A replica of Betsy Ross’ original flag, flying on Greens Farms Road.
I sure screwed up yesterday’s post about a “missing” AED. (It wasn’t stolen from Winslow Park at all – it had never been installed. I also misidentified the donor — it’s the Gudis Family Foundation and Norwalk Hospital, not the Adam Greenlee Foundation. Click here to see how many times I could be wrong in one post.)
This one is on the money.
A year ago, Tarantino owner John Paul Marchetti installed an American flag outside his Railroad Place restaurant.
He’s a proud Marine Corps Reserves veteran — he served in Iraq — and was honored to fly it 24/7.
Yesterday, he and his brothers — co-owners of the popular Saugatuck spot — noticed the flag was gone.
Marchetti was angry. “This country gave my immigrant parents everything,” he said. “The flag is a symbol of freedom. Someone stole that symbol.”
I told Marchetti I would post the story on “06880.” We’d ask the thief to return the flag, no questions asked.
Meanwhile, Marchetti posted a photo on social media.
Westport Hardware Store owner Richie Velez saw it. He promised to bring a replacement over, as soon as he got off work.
So, if you’re the flag thief, do the right thing. Hand it off to someone who can fly it as proudly as Marchetti, and cares as much as Velez.
Of the many memories I have of President Kennedy’s assassination, the most searing may be seeing flags at half-staff.
For 30 days, every American flag flew sadly, partway up its pole. It was a powerful reminder of the tremendous loss our country suffered.
Flags flew at half-staff on similarly sad occasions — when presidents Truman, Eisenhower and Johnson died, for example. I can’t remember any other time, when I was a teenager, that I saw flags that way.
Today, it seems, flags are almost permanently at half-staff.
I do not want to diminish anyone’s death — not the men and women who served our town, or those from our state who gave their lives serving our country.
But I can’t help wondering whether flying flags at half-staff so often doesn’t diminish their deaths in some way. Most of the time, we don’t know who’s being honored. There’s no one to tell us, so we ignore the symbolism. Half-staff flags become part of the scenery.
I know many “06880” readers will disagree. I’m not even sure I agree with myself.
But — in true American spirit — let the debate begin.
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