As Peace Officers Memorial Day on May 15, Memorial Day on May 27 (this year) and Flag Day on June 14 approaches, this is a time to reflect on just what our country’s flag represents. Old Glory, as it is sometimes referred to, is known throughout the world for the great freedoms we enjoy. Its 13 stripes of red and white represent our original 13 colonies and the 50 stars represent the 50 states of our country. The red stripes symbolize hardiness and valor, the white stripes are for purity and innocence. The blue field represents vigilance, perseverance and justice. And although there are no official reasons for the colors used, historians believe they come from the original first flag of our colonies known as the Continental Colors which itself originated from the Union Jack of the United Kingdom
As citizens we are proud to display our flag, and with this goes some responsibility. If you or your business are displaying our flag, there are some basic rules that you should know about; your flag should be illuminated during darkness and it should be lowered to half-staff from sunrise to sunset on the following holidays:
Peace Officers Memorial Day, May 15
Memorial Day, last Monday in May (May 27 this year; lowered only from sunrise to noon)
Flag Day, June 14
Patriot Day, September 11
National Firefighters Memorial Day, October (typically a Sunday during Fire Prevention Week)
Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, December 7
Additionally, by order of the president or governor the flag may be ordered to be flown at half-staff to honor a newly deceased federal or state government official. You can sign up online to receive an email from the Governor’s Office for these notifications. The email will provide you information as to when and why the flag should be at half-staff. One address is https://portal.ct.gov/Government/Flag-Status, but there are many other websites that offer this notification.
These months we pay tribute to the local, state and federal peace officers, who have died, or who have been disabled in the line of duty, on Peace Officers Memorial Day; and on Memorial Day, we remember and honor those people who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Please mark your calendars now to lower your flag to half-staff on these very special holidays.