Stillwater had a moment in its history last Friday.

The family of Army Maj. Scott Hagerty, who was killed in Afghanistan, held his funeral Friday morning, but hordes of local citizens wanted the Hagerty family to have us with them on that day, and they — we — lined Main Street with American flags. We simply wanted to be there when the cortege passed by, and let our flags tell the family how we felt. See us, feel us. We are here.

There were two little girls, twins maybe, with their parents, sitting quietly in canvas folding chairs, both furiously coloring with crayons and paper their mother and father had brought to keep them occupied.

A young working man appeared, in grimy jeans and a T-shirt, with the requisite baseball cap. He had a huge American flag on a pole, capped off with a glistening gold eagle. The pole was slung carelessly over his shoulder and he handled it like a toothpick. Some group had posted flags at the four corners of every Main Street intersection.

A young boy, maybe seven years old, rode up behind us quietly on a bicycle, and he asked us if someone was handing out flags. We said no, but my wife had two plastic flags on sticks, and she offered him one.

After about an hour, police officers began to man the intersections, and soon the procession itself appeared. The two little twin girls climbed down from their chairs and held up their crayon work. Each had produced a pretty fair version of an American flag.

Louie Geiser


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