Sean Shinn with his flag box Eagle Scout project.
By Allen Payton
Sean Shinn started in scouting in second grade. A few months later he met Josie Monaghan, founder of the East County Veterans Thrift Stores in downtown Antioch, at the 9-11 Memorial event and kept in constant contact.
“I’ve been around vets my entire life,” Shinn, now a junior at Antioch High and a member of Troop 151, said. “So, helping Josie would be amazing since she’s been helping every veteran that’s come back. I helped her with her store when she was starting out.”
So when it came to do a project to earn the rank of Eagle Scout, he contacted Josie. Shinn had already done two other projects at the [Veterans] Peer Counseling Center, including making a brochure rack, for the self-help mentoring. Plus, he organized the books they already had.
One of the ideas was a box for collecting American flags that are torn, tattered or faded, so they can be properly disposed of.
“They’re no longer fit for duty, according to the Flag Code,” Shinn shared. “They’re then retired.”
That’s done in two ways, either by burning or burying the flag.
He built the box and installed it in February, this year and a variety of flags have already been deposited in the box.
Shinn spoke of properly retiring a flag.
“It has to be done respectfully,” he shared. “Only Boy Scouts or military are authorized to do a flag retirement ceremony.”
He is almost done earning his desired rank.
“I have a couple more things to do,” Shinn stated. “One more merit badge and then my Eagle Scout Board of Review. Then I’m there. Hopefully in the next couple months.”
His future plans include military service with hopes of attending the Naval Academy.
If you have a worn American flag, you can bring it the East County Veterans Thrift Store at 522 West Second Street in Antioch and place it in Shinn’s flag box. It will be disposed of properly.