Centralias Avenue of Flags Memorial Day display draws many visitors
CENTRALIA — A Memorial Day display in Centralia is one that turns heads as people pass by.
The "Avenue of Flags" is up for its 12th year at Centralia Cemetery. There are 422 flags being flown in honor of veterans. There are 28 flags dedicated to veterans killed in action. Each flag has a nameplate honoring a deceased or current veteran.
A veteran does not have to be from Centralia or be buried in the city's cemetery to have a flag. The only requirement is that no other flag is being flown in their honor anywhere in the U.S. for this Memorial Day.
The Centralia Cetemetery Sexton, Phyllis Brown, said the display is special to the Centralia community and many visitors from out of town who come to see the flags.
"They said they've never seen anything quite like this so it's really something to be proud of," said Brown.
Centralia resident, Karen Tuggle, finds her father's nameplate and flag on display every year. She says the flags "show people what freedom really means" and that they serve as a symbol of Centralia's patriotism.
For one veteran, Dennis Mills, the display is extremely special because his brother and father-in-law, both of whom served in World War II, passed away and are buried at Centralia Cemetery.
"They have a flag flying here and it's an honor to fly it for them," said Mills.
The flags will continue to be flown until June 6, but will also be put up again for Independence Day and Veterans Day. There will be a Memorial Day service at Centralia Cemetery at 6:30 p.m. on Monday.