Members of the American Legion Post 626 in Birdsboro met at the Birdsboro Cemetery to place more than 800 flags on veteran graves on May 16.
“COVID-19 didn't impact us; we adjusted and overcame," said Birdsboro American Legion Robert Mealand, a former Scoutmaster of Troop 595. "I’ve been placing flags for many, many years.”
Local scouts helped the Legion members place the flags at veterans' graves.
“Scouting is an exceptional opportunity to mentor our youth while having fun. The American Legion has supported scouting since its first national convention in 1919," he said. "No better way to teach our youth about selfless service. Scouting is part of the Legion’s mission.”
This year due to COVID restrictions they didn’t have as many volunteers, but people still showed up to honor the fallen veterans and pay their respects.
There are usually upwards to 40 or so Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, and Boy Scouts that come to participate in this event, but due to the stay at home order all scout activities were canceled; the scouts were told not to wear their uniforms because this was not a “Scout” event.
Myah Derer, 12, Birdsboro, Cadette Girl Scout Troop #1797, wore her Girl Scout vest anyway.
“I wore my Girl Scout vest even though I was told not to, I did it out of respect for our military," said Myah. "These men and women wore their uniforms, some of them died in them. It’s what they would’ve wanted.”
Myah also made sure that all veterans and volunteers had masks, she handed out 35 masks that she made out of patriotic fabric.
Jacob Derer,10, Webelos Den Pack 595, Birdsboro said, “This is something that I look forward to each year, we were not going to just stay home when the Legion needed our help to put out all the flags.”
Mark Derer Jr., 6, Lion Den Pack 595, a kindergartner at Daniel Boone Primary Center, talked about the pandemic putting a halt to his Memorial Day plans.
"I'm sad that I can't be in the parade and wear my new Cub Scout uniform for everyone to see. I miss my teacher, Mrs. Myers, and all of my friends."
Miles Terry, 7, Birdsboro, is a Cub Scout in Pack 595, Tiger Den, he and his little sister Annie, 4, honored the graves of veterans by placing flags.
“It felt good to honor them. I’m thankful they served our country to protect us. People in the military are brave. I would be scared to fight in a war,” said Miles.
“We put the flags next to the gravestones because we wanted to honor them. I felt happy and sad,” said Annie.
“This was our first time participating in this tradition. It was an important learning experience for my children and led to many meaningful discussions about war and death. We look forward to continuing this tradition with scouts in the years to come,” said their mother, Sarah.