In the United States, a traditional honor available to veterans, police officers and firefighters who have passed, is to have the flag draped over the casket at their memorial or funeral services ceremoniously folded and presented to their next of kin.
When the US Military honors those who have fallen in the line of duty, the US flag draped over the casket is folded twelve times by six honor guards, three on each side of the casket.
As the flag is folded, the red and white stripes are wrapped into the blue, symbolizing how day folds into night. The blue portion of the flag symbolizes honor, and leaving the stars visible on the folded flag represents the 50 states our veterans served. This particular custom of special folding is reserved for the United States Flag.
After the flag is completely folded and tucked in, it is reminiscent of a tri-cornered hat, which serves to remind Americans of the colonial soldiers who served under General George Washington and the sailors and Marines who served under Captain John Paul Jones.
An honor guard from one of the United States Armed Forces presents the flag to the fallen service member’s next of kin or designated family member. The person presenting the flag kneels in front of his or her chair to present the folded flag, with the straight edge facing the recipient. The presenter then recites:
On behalf of the President of the United States, the United States (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force or Coast Guard), and a grateful nation, please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for your loved one’s honorable and faithful service.
The family receiving the flag will often display it in a place of honor in their home, representing the service of their family member who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country.
We at Gemini honor those that have fallen in service to our country. We thank them and their families for their sacrifice.