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Scout provides a flag retirement box for 82nd museum


A local scout provided a receptacle for the collection of worn flags to the 82nd Airborne Division War Memorial Museum on Fort Bragg on July 20.

Riley Fitzwater, a scout in Troop 713, delivered the wooden receptacle to Christopher Ruff, the museum curator, where it was placed inside near the entrance to the museum.

Ruff said he was contacted several months ago through Ralph Alvarez, the museum’s volunteer coordinator, museum technician and archivist.

Fitzwater then pitched the concept to Ruff.

Ruff added, “I thought it was a good idea and it would be great for the entryway.”

Fitzwater said that the flag receptacle project is part of his goal to achieve Eagle Scout, the highest rank in the scouting program. Among other requirements, a scout must conceive, propose, plan, fundraise and execute a community improvement project.

Members of Troop 713 gathered to assist him with construction of the receptacle, fulfilling three principles of the scout law: trustworthy, loyal and helpful. Fitzwater says his project is unique because his troop will continue his work by collecting the flags and performing dignified disposals even after he has aged out of scouting.

Per the U.S. Flag Code, when a flag is so tattered that it no longer fits to serve as a symbol of the United States, it should be replaced in a dignified manner, preferably by burning. The receptacle offers an easily accessible location for those needing to properly dispose of a flag.

Fort Bragg, 82nd Airborne Division War Memorial Museum, flag receptacle, scout