Soldier holds up flag after pole was knocked down

Local News

WILBRAHAM, Mass. (WWLP) – The flagpole outside Wingate of Wilbraham was knocked down over the winter, but the assisted living and rehab facility is not without a patriotic display this Memorial Day.

Army Specialist Darren Swallow took it upon himself to stand outside the facility holding a flag as a tribute to those who served and made the ultimate sacrifice. The veteran, who is disabled following multiple tours in Iraq, told 22News that he arrived at Wingate at around 3:30 A.M., and plans to stay there holding the flag until 1:00 P.M.

Swallow said that his girlfriend works in the kitchen at Wingate, and when she told him about the wintertime accident that caused the pole to come down, he felt compelled to do something for Memorial Day.

The display has been moving to workers and visitors at Wingate.

Brenda Park sent 22News a photo of the soldier holding the flag, which she called “a true tribute to our servicemen.”

Susan Huard, who works in the office at Wingate, said that she is so proud to see Swallow doing this. Huard has a son, a daughter, and a son-in-law who are serving in the military.

Observed since 1868, Memorial Day honors all Americans who died in military service to our country.

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