Church offers flag disposal service

Nancy and LeRoy Harshaw have created a drop-off receptacle at the Mansfield Community Church for people who wish to properly dispose of their old and worn-out flags. (Empire Press photo/Adrienne Douke)


By Adrienne Douke
Empire Press Correspondent

Have you ever wondered what to do with a worn-out American flag?

After some consideration, Mansfield Community Church Pastor LeRoy Harshaw and his wife Nancy decided that the Mansfield community needed a place where people with flags to be discarded could dispose of them properly. To fill this need, they placed a receptacle on the back porch of the church for flags to be safely disposed.

“I will take the flags to the VFW in Brewster,” Nancy Harshaw said, when the box fills up.

Harshaw noted that she hadn’t thought about this issue until doing some housecleaning and discovered some old American flags that needed disposal, but she didn’t know how to go about it.

“We are not supposed to fly a United States flag that is ripped, torn, tattered or has holes in it,” Harshaw said. “Burning it or throwing it in the garbage felt disrespectful.”

So the Harshaws came up with a common sense solution.

The couple also want the flag disposal service to continue after they retire from the pastorate and thought this was a good plan of action.

“It was important to me and I am sure it is important to others that our flags be disposed of properly,” Harshaw concluded. “We believe the VFW in Brewster will dispose of flags that have outlived their display, with reverence and respect.”

For more information about flag disposal at the church, call 693-1912.