When we look at the flag, do we remember that it flies overhead in battle?

Do we realize how many soldiers it inspires? Can we fathom how many of those men and women give their lives to protect everything that flag symbolizes: Freedom, justice, and equality to all mankind?

These soldiers fight for you and for me. They perform their duties in war and peace to protect their friends and family. We honor that service when we salute the flag.

Materially, the flag is nothing more than fabric and thread. A veteran looks at that flag and remembers. They celebrate their nation when they salute the flag. Should we not do the same?

So, the next time you gaze up at that waving banner, the next time you put your hand on your heart, the next time you are tempted to mindlessly repeat a memorized pledge, remember the veteran.

Celebrate all that they do and all that they have given us through their service.

Our flag was designed in 1776 by seamstress Elizabeth (Betsy) Ross. The American flag is one of the oldest national emblems and it’s true birthday is recognized on the day George Washington presented it to the Continental Congress, June 14, 1777.

Flag Day was first observed by a proclamation of President Woodrow Wilson. Congress adopted a joint resolution for Flag Day August 3, 1949.

Even before that federal government order, the American Legion prompted schools and cities to hold special celebrations on June 14.

Cashmere American Legion Post No. 64 will hold a special ceremony on Flag Day at the Legion hall at 3 p.m. to burn old and tattered flags. It will be a short ceremony with a prayer, special reading and taps. Everyone is invited to join them.

Please hang your American Flag proudly on Flag Day, June 14, and every day.

Linda Ingraham is president of the Cashmere American Legion Auxiliary No. 64.