Monday, May 26, 2014, is Memorial Day in the U.S. It’s the day we honor soldiers who died, either fighting to defend the nation, or after.
Because it honors the dead, the flag-flying rules differ slightly.
If you’re flying your flag from a staff that allows raising and lowering, the flag should be posted at half-staff in the morning at sunrise. At noon, the flag goes to full-staff position.
Usual flag-raising rules apply: Going up the staff, the flag rises briskly. Coming down, it sinks slowly.
Before going to the half-staff position to honor the dead, the flag should be raised briskly to the top of the pole, and then brought down slowly to half-staff. At noon, again, the flag rises briskly. And at retreat, at sundown, the flag comes down slowly.
Most Americans have a flag that attaches to the wall of a residence, or in other ways is not capable of raising and lowering. In that case, simply post the the flag.
- U.S. flag etiquette from the Carlsbad (New Mexico) Current-Argus
- Flag etiquette page from the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW)
- “Memorial Day in Philadelphia: Have fun, and remember reverently,” Philly.com
- .pdf of the U.S. Senate’s Congressional Research Service Report on flag etiquette