Inspiring the Valley: The faces behind the nearly 4,000 flags laid to rest at veteran’s gravesites

Inspiring the Valley

Memorial Day has passed and the flags to honor the fallen have been put away. But for many, the memories of that day stay with them all year long.

There’s a group of people who take great pride in putting up and taking down the thousands of flags at the Clovis Cemetery District.

It is the symbol of patriotism: the American flag. At the Clovis Cemetery District, it is the way they honor veterans on memorial day.

“Memorial Day is all about honoring those who sacrificed all for the greater good of this country,” says Frank Ducor, commander at American Legion Post 147.

For more than 70 years, the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars have worked together to make sure every flag, large and small is in place when people come here to honor the fallen.

“Approximately 3,800 veterans are buried here and we try to identify each and every veterans graveside and place a flag in honor of that veteran,” Ducor explained.

Many volunteers show up on a Saturday morning to make sure this work is done, but it is the Boy Scouts who make this their mission every year.

“It means a lot just to be able to appreciate and thank people who come out here. Their families have lost more than we could ever repay but showing that we care enough to support them, it’s one of the greatest thing I feel about being a scout,” says Zach Holiday, an Eagle Scout.

3,800 veterans laid to rest, a flag placed at every grave.

“It just gives you a sense that you’ve got to respect this place you’ve got to respect the places around you and basically every single grave here,” Spencer Hoopes says.

You see that same level of respect in the staff at the cemetery. It is their job to take down, fold and put away every flag until next Memorial Day.

Fidel Espiritu with the Clovis District Cemetery says, “We don’t mind putting them up because it’s the least we can do for our veterans and I wish we could do more.”

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