Community members of all ages gather at Pinecrest Cemetery to place American Flags on each fallen soldiers grave to remember them on Memorial Day.

OSCODA – With procedures and rules put in place, local military personnel from the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3735, the Sons of the American Legion, American Legion Riders and community members came together on Friday, May 22, to honor fallen soldiers by placing American Flags on each grave.

With COVID-19 taking a front row seat this year, the event appeared a bit different with volunteers staying a safe distance from one another and wearing face masks, but that didn’t keep the Veterans away. 

Although the circumstances are starkly different this year, American Legion 274 Adjutant Ed Kuhn said nothing could keep the Veterans from honoring their fellow soldiers. 

“When it comes to Veterans we will go through with it. We adapt,” said Kuhn. 

Kuhn said no matter the weather or the circumstances the placing of the flags on the graves are about recognizing the soldiers. 

“It is honoring the veteran,” said Kuhn. 

In addition to that, according to Kuhn, placing flags on Veteran’s graves is a law and has been since 1915 when the Markers for Veteran’s Graves Act 63 went into effect. 

“An Act to provide for the furnishing of suitable flag holders and United States flags for the graves of veterans who served in the armed forces of the United States for the marking and designation of the graves for memorial purposes,” stated the Act. 

Additionally the Act states that the cost of the flags are to be purchased by the local township and given to a local veteran’s organization affiliate; however, Kuhn said Oscoda Township shares the cost with the legion. Further, there are consequences if an individual engages in removing, destroying, defacing or carrying away any of the flags placed on the graves. 

The flags will remain at each grave site until Veteran’s Day on Wednesday, Nov. 11.