Stars for Our Troops Program Expands to DeFuniak Springs

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Since 2014, Walton County has offered a flag depository in its South Walton Annex. Its purpose is to properly dispose of tattered and worn American flags.
 
“It may seem really simple, but it’s those simple things that are really important, that really matter,” said Louis Svehla, the Public Information Manager for the county.
 
A new bin was added in the north end of the county recently, bringing the total number to three bins. Carolynn Lane, her husband and Mark Schroeder coordinate the disposal of the flags. 
 
“We wanted to give back a little bit,” said Lane. “We wanted to show veterans, first responders, active duty personnel that they are truly appreciated.”
 
The Lanes have collected and disposed of hundreds of flags in the past couple of years, but their patriotism goes beyond ceremonially burning the flag.
 
“We have the individual stars cut with (a) little saying,” said Lane.
 
They head up the Walton County chapter of Stars for Our Troops. Stars differing in colors and size are carefully cut and handed out to service members present and past.
 
Veterans themselves, the Lanes say its something small they do to make a big impact.
 
“Some business, some county organization, government organization, a home actually flew a flag and wanted to honor them in this way,” said Lane. “There was a patriotic family or group that was flying our colors each day.”
 
There are bins located at the South Walton Annex, the South Bay Ace Hardware in Santa Rosa Beach, and the newest location at the Walton County Courthouse in DeFuniak Springs. 
 
For more information, visit starsforourtroops.org.

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