Quilters Fix Veterans' Flags

By Dave Franzman, Reporter

MARION, Iowa - Some Eastern Iowa quilters are working to make sure some veterans' flags continue to fly high.

Winds have whipped these flags on military holidays, leaving them tattered. When flags become tattered and in disrepair the usual solution is simply to replace them, but these are flags that have draped the casket of a service member. They carry the name of the veteran. So members of the Eastern Iowa Quilters Guild undertook a rescue mission.

The quilters started repairing the flags that line the driveways and grounds at Cedar Memorial Cemetery a little more than six weeks ago.
The cemetery asked the quilters to fix a total of 400. As of Wednesday's sewing session, they've repaired about two thirds of that number.

Each quilter works with a single color of thread. The flags in need of repair keep going round the room until all the damaged spots are fixed.

"We're actually remaking the corner of this flag so it will fly. Some of them have little holes. Some have torn seams," Debra Murphy, Quilting Guild Member, said.

"It makes me feel very good that I maybe can help in my little way, because they have done so much for us," Shirley Rinderknecht, Quilting Guild Member, said.

About 250 people belong to the East Iowa Quilters Guild and a number of members have worked on the flags. The goal is to get all the torn flags from Cedar Memorial repairs by May 1. That way they'll be ready to go back on display for Memorial Day.
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