Stars, stripes fly proudly above Sheriff’s Office
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By Carissa Sitki
The Jersey County Sheriff’s Office (JCSO) held a flag raising ceremony on Veterans Day, last Thursday, following the Veterans Day parade. There was not previously a flagpole present at the office and Sheriff Mike Ringhausen said, “What better way, than to have Vets fly the first flag on our new pole? And on Veterans Day, of all days, it’s great.”
The new additions to the JCSO are thanks to a community beautification project carried out by Jersey County’s 4-H group, the All-American Clovers. In addition to the flagpole, the Clovers also donated two large benches to sit just outside the entrance to JCSO to provide extra seating. The material for the benches was donated by R.P. lumber and they were constructed by the Clovers.
“The kids painted and assembled and put in so much work on these benches,” said Ringhausen. “My foyer area is small, so they will really help and with COVID and everything, people can better spread out and sit outside, if they want to, while they wait.”
The Clovers received grant funds for the project and since the material for the benches was donated, they were able to put the majority of the funds into the large flagpole. The project was supposed to happen in Spring of 2020, but was derailed due to COVID-19, according to Clover volunteer leader, Nate Blasa.
“The kids put in so much hard work and this project turned out great,” said Blasa. “It means so much to [Sheriff Ringhausen].”
Other Clover Leader, Andrea Pegram, shared Blasa’s sentiment and added, “I feel [the Sheriff’s Office] really deserved this and it feels good that the kids were able to help them out by doing this project.”
During the ceremony, Ringhausen read a poem called “My Name Is Old Glory” by Don S. Miller. The sentimental poem is written from the point of view of the American flag.
The poem’s final stanza reads:
“I am proud.
My name is Old Glory.
Dear God… Long may I wave!”
The flag was then presented to Veteran Greg Brenden who placed the flag on the pole and raised it. When it reached half-mast, in a seemingly-symbolic moment for our fallen heroes, the flag got stuck for a moment before being untangled and raised up the rest of the way.
Attending Clovers were Patrick Slusser, Paul Slusser, Clark Blasa, Grant Blasa, Dinah Slusser, Daphne Slusser, Kelsey Belcher, Jenna Pegram, and Ava Pegram. The Clovers posed for photos, along with their leaders and Ringhausen, following the ceremony.
Ringhausen extended his gratitude to the Clovers for the new flagpole. “Now we have a flag to fly to show honor and respect for fallen officers, that’s what it does for us,” he said.