Troop 41 has retired many flags as a courtesy to the flag owners and our country.
It is really a simple process. Flags should NEVER be placed in the trash as the flag is the symbol of our nation, of us. Prior to disposing of a retired, damaged or worn US Flag, it must be converted back to just cloth. This is the Troop 41 process we employ to respectfully complete the disposal.
We first conduct a short ceremony, at a weekend event to unfold the flag to be retired, so we may salute it one last time, and we recite the pledge of allegiance one last time and then properly fold the flag which is protocol. Then the flag is unfolded and held at four corners tight, and our Senior Patrol leader will cut away the blue field of stars, and then proceed to cut the rest of the flag into three pieces as depicted. Now the pieces are cloth again. These pieces of cloth have completed their journey of duty as a flag and now must return to the earth. They are only cloth at this point.
Historically, flag cloth is burned as the last step in the retirement, however, today flags are made of materials that create hazardous gases when burned. The Boy Scouts of America also teaches our scouts to protect our environment, therefore the flag pieces are packaged up and remanded to a disposal authority. In the event of cotton flags, we will from time to time burn those components at appropriate ceremonies and settings, but disposal is the normal means of final retirement of the cloth.
If you would like help with the retirement of a US Flag, please email our chairman at email@example.com.
God Bless our Flag and our great nation.