Gage County officials take heat for non-placement of American Flags

BEATRICE – Gage County officials took some criticism when American Flags didn’t fly on the county courthouse grounds, on Memorial Day.
The day began with some very light rain, but then held off for the remainder of Memorial Day.

Volunteers recruited by the Gage County Veterans Service Office typically put up the flags early in the morning…. which can take about two hours…often longer to take down and store away.  The flags are cloth, donated service flags from caskets.

"There's a lot of people that really wanted those flags up, but there's a lot of fear not to ruin someone's burial flag, also."

Gage County Board Chairman Erich Tiemann and other supervisors discussed the issue of placing the flags, at Wednesday’s board meeting.
Supervisor Dennis Byars says he received a lot of complaints about the flags not being up on the holiday.

"I had calls all day and into the night. I've had them for two days from people who were so upset....(Tiemann)..I would ask people, please be patient on that...I mean, that is a burial flag. If it gets rained on, the colors will bleed between those. They cannot be used outdoors in rain events. All of us are sad. That looks beautiful when you come through town and all the flags are flying. But, at the same time I'd ask everyone to please have some respect for those burial flags."

One option would be to purchase all-weather flags. Building and Grounds Superintendent Dave Jones says putting up all-weather flags on just the south grounds of the courthouse would be another possibility…when rain threatens. The county will be looking into pricing all-weather American Flags.

Tiemann issued a public apology for the flags not being placed.