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Flags flown at half-staff to honor John Glenn

Organizations promote education and appreciation of U.S. flag

By Jeff Sigmund
On April 19, 2017

Flags at Kirkwood Community College, Cedar Rapids and around the nation were flown at half-staff on April 6. 

The lowering of the flags was in honor of a legendary astronaut, veteran and U.S. Senator John Glenn who died Dec. 8, 2016. 

Glenn was laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery on April 6, which also fell on the 100th anniversary of the day the United States entered World War I. 

On April 6, John Glenn was laid to rest in the Arlington National
Cemetery. The day also marked the 100-year anniversary of the
United States entering into World War I. Flags were lowered around the
country to honor Glenn, who passed away on Dec. 8, 2016, at the age of 95.

Joshua Lindsey, business major, said, “I think it’s an important gesture to show respect for our fallen heroes.”

For those who may wonder why flags are flown at half-staff, The American Legion has created a flag code available online at The site states, “The term ‘half-staff’ means the position of the flag when it is one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff.”

Another organization that has adopted a mission to educate and encourage Americans to gain appreciation for the flag is The National Flag Foundation (NFF). The NFF has created the website as a dedication to the nation’s flag.  

The website offers information on proper flag etiquette, as well as history about the U.S. flag. 

According to, “The pertinent section of the Flag Code says, ‘By order of the President, the flag shall be flown at half-staff upon the death of principal figures of the United States Government and the Governor of a State, territory, or possession, as a mark of respect to their memory. In the event of the death of other officials or foreign dignitaries, the flag is to be displayed at half-staff according to Presidential orders, or in accordance with recognized customs or practices not inconsistent with law.’” also states, “Any rule or custom pertaining to the display of the flag of the United States of America, set forth herein, may be altered, modified, or repealed, or additional rules with respect thereto may be prescribed, by the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States, whenever he deems it to be appropriate or desirable.”

The position of the flag provides citizens with information about what is going in the nation.

Lindsey added, “When I see a flag flown at half-staff, I believe that we are showing compassion and respect for a person of great importance and for their families.”


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