FULTON, NY – A truckload of flags pulled into Mount Adnah Cemetery as dozens of volunteers braved the rain to place flags on the grave sites of veterans and fallen fire and police department members.
Veterans John Young and Donna Kestner with the Fulton Veterans’ Council and the Fulton American Legion handed out flags to several volunteers eager to help.
The city of Fulton budgets for the flags each year, and the Fulton Veterans’ Council distributes them throughout seven cemeteries, a tradition dating back more than 50 years, Young said.
Each year, a group of volunteers help to distribute the flags at Mount Adnah Cemetery and St. Mary’s Cemetery in Fulton.
This year, the Fulton Fire Department, American Legion, VFW, Fulton Veterans’ Council, and local school students including members from the JV and Varsity boys’ lacrosse teams came together to honor the graves of fallen soldiers and public safety service members.
Members of FFD A Shift and off-duty Fire Chief David Eiffe and his family walked throughout the cemeteries to place flags, the second year of participation from the department.
“It’s important to be involved in the community. That’s going to be our goal this year, to kind of push ourselves out. We did this last year and got a great response as far as people being appreciative. That’s a part of what the Fire Department should be, is part of the community. So the guys are out here getting wet and putting flags down! We’re proud to help and honored to help,” Chief Eiffe said.
Members of the Fulton lacrosse program have volunteered their time for the past five years.
Josh Compson, a G. Ray Bodley senior, has helped place flags each of those five years.
“We like giving back to the people that served our country,” Compson said, volunteering alongside freshman Dominic Abbott and junior Nick Noel.
Despite graduating this year, Compson plans to volunteer his time next year even after his role on the Fulton lacrosse team is over.