Tattered, tangled U.S. flag ‘a travesty’

Posted at 12:45 AM, Jan 31, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-31 13:39:03-05

UPDATE: Post office comments on, replaces tattered American flag

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)--Wednesday was a grand ol’ day for flying the U.S. flag. The strong, gusting winds really made Old Glory snap to attention.

But not at the Richmond Central Post Office at 2nd and Grace Streets, where the U.S. flag has been in distress for a while. No gust could unfurl it, although torn strips flapped in the wind.

“It’s gray, it’s ragged, it’s tattered,” said Darryl Starr, an artist who lives right around the corner. “And it’s not only wrapped around the flagpole itself, it’s wrapped around a waste pipe.”

It angers Starr not just as a citizen, but as combat veteran who fought for this country in  Vietnam.

“I enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1968, went across,” he said. “Artillery.”  The sight of that torn and tangled flag – flying over a federal building no less, would sicken any veteran, he said.

“I immediately went into the post office, waited in line and spoke with the clerks and said, ‘Have you all seen the flag outside?’ And they said no. It’s really a travesty and it shouldn’t be like that.”

Starr said he also went to the main post office on Brook Road and talked with a supervisor, who assured him the situation would be taken care of immediately. But he said he has little confidence of a quick delivery on that promise.

“Then I emailed the Postmaster General to let them know what was happening with the American flag on their post office,” Starr said.

CBS-6 reached out to the local post office spokeswoman about the flag by phone and email late in the business day, but didn’t get an answer Wednesday.

He added that this country seems more divided than ever, socially and politically, and the flag is just about the only thing that unites us.

“It should be taken care,” he said. “It should be respected.”