Eagle Scout hosting flag retirement ceremony Dec. 26; public invited

Kenneth Barros Winkleblech, a 17-year-old Life Scout and Troop Guide in Unit 305 and senior at St. Peter’s Prep from Harrison, says his Eagle Project is intended to demonstrate patriotism and respect for the nation’s flag by retiring and replacing ones that are no longer fit to be displayed.

Winkleblech has been conducting private ceremonies to lower and collect ripped, frayed and faded American flags and to replace them with new ones flown at private homes, local businesses and organizations since early December 2022 and will continue to do so until Christmas Eve.

The plan involves replacing at least 20 American flags with new ones in sizes either 3×5 feet or 4×6 feet at no cost to the homeowner, merchant or organization. Donations are being accepted to cover the expense of purchasing new flags and the costs associated with raising them, such as clips and nuts and bolts.

To request a replacement of a worn American flag or to donate, contact Winkleblech by email at RaisingPatriotism@gmail.com.

Another aspect of the Eagle Project is to teach proper flag etiquette to younger scouts in the troop. Winkleblech also is creating a booklet outlining the protocol of a flag raising ceremony, including how to lower, retire, raise and fly flags respectfully.

Recipients of the new American flags and members of the community are invited to attend the flag retirement ceremony Monday, Dec. 26, at 3 p.m. at the fire pit on the front lawn at St. Stephen’s Church in Kearny. Scouts and leaders will assist Winkleblech with the burning of the tattered flags in a dignified manner.

The Eagle candidate is expected to plan, fundraise, secure materials, and oversee the execution of a completed project, including managing Scout leaders and fellow Scouts in leadership activities throughout the endeavor.

Troop/Pack 305 was organized in 1933 and continues to provide youth leadership training to boys and girls in Kearny, Harrison, East Newark and surrounding towns as Unit 305.  For more information or to join, visit www.KearnyScouts.com.

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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.