Learn proper parade flag etiquette

| May 23, 2014

COSHOCTON – Memorial Day parades are right around the corner and Coshocton County Veterans want to make sure people know what to do when the flag passes them.

“It bothers a lot of veterans and should bother everybody when people don’t pay attention to the flag and go on about their business,” said Jim Barstow, veterans service officer. “I don’t think people do it on purpose though, I think they just haven’t learned what to do.”

When they see the flag in the parade anyone in uniform should render a salute.

“Veterans and members of the armed forces not in uniform may render a salute or put their hand over their heart,” Barstow said.

Members of the general public also should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over their heart.

“Only those who are able need to stand,” Barstow said.

Males also should remove their hats or covers.

“Women also can do this, but it’s not mandatory,” Barstow said. “It’s respectful if they do, but it’s not offensive if they don’t.”

All conversation also should cease when you see the flag.

“People aren’t ignoring it, but only some stand and a lot continue their conversations,” Barstow said. “You should stop what you are doing and put your full focus on the flag.”

The public will be reminded of some of these tips with a new banner, which will be used at the parade.

“It will be before the flag and carried by volunteers,” Barstow said. “I believe it says please stand and remove your caps. People not doing these things has been very noticeable and this will provide them with some education.”

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About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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