SPOTSWOOD, NJ - VFW Post 4589 marked Flag Day by holding a flag disposal ceremony on Sunday morning at 11 a.m.

"All were given to us by patriotic neighbors who wanted them disposed of properly," explained Travis Fryzowicz.

Fryzowicz is a longtime Spotswood resident and a Vietnam veteran. He and his wife Grace donated the Battlefield Cross Memorial in 2018 that stands at Spotswood's War Memorial on Summerhill Road.

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Thirty people attended the small ceremony at Spotswood VFW Post on Daniel Road. More than 1,000 unserviceable American flags were disposed of.

Flag Day celebrates the day the American flag became official on June 17, 1777 when the Second Continental Congress approved the design eventually made famous Betsy Ross. While Ross is given credit for the red, white and blue design of the flag that features a star for each state, the Library of Congress states that historians actually give a nod to Francis Hopkinson for the design. Hopkinson also designed the USA's Great Seal and first coin.

Since the first flag featuring 13 stripes and 13 stars, there have been 27 official versions of the American flag. The current United States flag was adopted on July 4, 1960. Today's version added two stars for Alaska and Hawaii. The American flag turned 243 on Flag Day 2020.

Unserviceable flags should not be thrown away according to the United States Flag Code. The Flag Code states that when an American flag is no longer in good condition, it should be "destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning." While the code does not say specifically how to dispose of an unserviceable flag, VFW Posts, American Legions and the Boy Scouts hold special flag burning ceremonies throughout the year in conjunction with local fire departments.

The Spotswood Fire Department was on hand today to assist in the VFW Post 4589's flag disposal ceremony.