The United States Flag Code, Title 4, Section 8k states-“The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem of display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.”
Anyone. The U.S. Flag Code does not specify any one person or organization that is authorized for retiring American Flags. An official flag retirement ceremony is not required however the disposal should be private, dignified, and solemn.
We realize that burning may not always be an option and some burned American Flag materials are not good for the environment. Listed below are a few other options when it comes to properly retiring an American Flag:
These organizations are often familiar with flag retirement protocol and will take your flag and ensure that it is disposed of properly.
The Stars for our Troops program takes your old, tattered and worn out American Flags and turns them into a prized possession for an American Soldier at home, on base or overseas. Volunteers lovingly cut each embroidered star from the flag, dispose of the stripes properly, and place each star into a tiny plastic bag with a card.
"I am part of our American flag that has flown over the U.S.A. I can no longer fly. The sun and winds have caused me to become tattered and torn. Please carry me as a reminder that you are not forgotten"
The program does not accept printed flags, only embroidered, and the flags must be Made in the USA and must be size 3 foot x 5 foot.
If you'd like to contribute your retired flag to the Stars for Our Troops program, please send your flag to the following address:
Stars for Our Troops, Inc.
2 116th St, Box 301
Troy, NY 12182-0301
*Please note if you are interested in donating your old 3X5 foot flag to Stars For Our Troops, we will also email and pre-paid mailing label for your convenience.