Exalted Ruler, Mesquite Elks Lodge 2811 Lou Martin, left, and Leading Knight Charles Lumkee conduct Flag Day ceremonies in Mesquite, June 14. Photo by Barbara Ellestad
It's one of those holidays that largely goes unnoticed in America except in Mesquite when the Elks Lodge #2811 sponsors its annual Flag Day celebration like it did Thursday, June 14.
A small group gathered at the Veterans Memorial Park early in the morning and honored the American Flag with a ritual that began in 1908 with the National Grand Lodge of the Elks.
Exalted Ruler of the local Elks Lodge 2811, Lou Martin led the ceremony that began with Donna Thomas singing the National Anthem.
Elks member Councilman Geno Withelder provided remarks about
the history of Flag Day dating from 1889 and the Pledge of Alliance.
As the Elks Leading Knight Charles Lumkee gave an account of each historical American Flag, members of the Mesquite Boy Scout Troop 60, under the supervision of the Flag Day Chair Person Bill Nicholes, proudly carried the flag to the center stage.
Tony Hardway, Director of the Mesquite Veterans Honor Guard played the mournful Taps in honor of fallen military members who sacrificed so much for the symbol of freedom.
As the American and POW/MIA flags gently waved in the slight morning breeze, Brian Wursten, through song, reminded everyone in attendance what an honor it is to be an American.