The requirements to obtain the rank of Eagle Scout include earning 21 merit badges, serving in a position of leadership and most importantly developing a community service project.
And you have to do it all and more before reaching the age of 18.
For Crothersville Troop 522 Scout John Jones, he had to complete the process to obtain the Boy Scouts of America’s highest rank during the COVID-19 pandemic.
His project involved placing a flag retirement box in front of the Crothersville Library. It’s the only box of its kind in town and just the second in Jackson County. A flag retirement box was placed in front of the Seymour American Legion Post earlier this year.
The purpose of the box is to allow people to properly retire their flags instead of just throwing them away.
Once a flag is placed in the box and the door swings shut, it drops into a lower compartment that can only be opened by someone with a key. The flags are later respectfully, and ceremonially burned by a Crothersville VFW member during a once a year ceremony.
“There are only certain people who can retire flags,” said Crothersville Troop leader Steve Plasse, noting they are Scouts, active military personnel and veterans’ organizations.
Last Wednesday, just in time for the July 4 weekend, 16-year-old Jones along with his grandfather, Edward Byrd, and Plasse installed the flag retirement box along US 31 at the library.
Jones and Plasse were joined by library officials for the dedication
When to retire a flag: A flag ready for retirement may have rips or tears, holes, fading, discoloration or frayed edges.
How to retire a flag: If the flag is large enough to fold, it should be folded and then placed in the retirement box. In a somber, respectful ceremony, officials will place the flag on a flame so it burns quickly with none of the flag remaining afterwards.