REPUBLIC, Mo -- You can now drop off torn or tattered American flags in Republic thanks to a 14 year old Eagle Scout candidate. who made the drop-off his eagle project.
As 14 year old Colton Quinn was deciding what he wanted to do for his eagle project, he thought of the idea while driving through Republic.
"I saw a lot of flags around town and some of them looked old and tattered, so I was thinking how could we retire them respectfully and properly?" explained Quinn. "So we did some research and found very little places around here where you can drop them off and someone is trusted to respectfully retire them."
So he decided to do something about that. He bought the box online, then designed the wrap himself. It was a six month process, until the box finally was installed at J.R. Martin Park in Republic next to the Veterans memorial.
"It feels good because a lot of people probably have flags that they can't get rid of respectfully and properly, so it helps them out." said Quinn.
After our interview, Colton decided to check the box for flags, even though he checked it the day before and found 19.
It was full! Another 14 flags, and more than 30 flags deposited in the bin's first week.
What did Colton think? "Surprised and happy that it did what it was supposed to." he explained.
"I hope that it accomplishes two things." said John Saunders, the life to eagle coordinator for Troop 174. "One, that people will bring their tattered flags here. And that we can get more people interested in maybe learning the proper way to dispose of the flags, and it may even make more people want to put up a flag."
Colton will collect the flags and then Troop 174 will use them as training tools.
"We could go and respectfully retire them and have enough people to do it. And maybe teach the people because not a lot of people know how to do it. So it would help a lot of our scouts and new scouts could learn how to retire a flag if they get one when they are older." explained Quinn.
Several local businesses helped with Colton's project, including Lowe's in Republic and Print Boss in Marshfield for the wrapping. Steinert Greenhouse and Garden in Springfield, Sonic in Republic, and the Republic Parks and Recreation department also helped.