The few American flag retirement boxes in Great Neck were in poor shape, according to Louise McCann, the commander of American Legion Post 160, and “not at all a proper retirement container for the national colors”
So when aspiring Eagle Scout Daren Chan of Great Neck Boy Scout Troop 10 pitched the idea of adding refurbished boxes in Great Neck to the American Legion, McCann said it was an “excellent idea.”
“It was probably providence that Daren said that he would like to build new flag retirement boxes,” McCann, the project’s beneficiary, said in an interview.
“They said that they needed more American flag retirement boxes,” Chan said in a separate interview, “so for my American Eagle Scout project, I decided to make three more boxes.”
Since then, three more American flag retirement boxes have been placed throughout the Great Neck peninsula – at the Great Neck Library, Great Neck Village Hall at 61 Baker Hill Road, and at the Village Green Park.
By putting the flags in the disposal box, he said that old American flags can be properly retired in a formal ceremony by the right organization.
“The importance of the project is to ensure that all flags that are about to be retired are retired in the most respectful way possible,” McCann said.
“It gives not only Daren, but all of the scouts in his troop, much more appreciation for what the flag stands for and how it should be handled,” McCann added.
Chan, who approached numerous villages and organizations in previous months, said the boards he went to were mostly very receptive to the idea of installing the boxes.
“In the Village of Great Neck, they really liked the idea of a flag box to collect the American flags,” Chan said. “They were really accepting of the idea and even asked me to make more if I can. The library liked the idea too.”
Whether or not more will be made is unclear, Chan said, but he said he is considering passing on the project to someone else.
“I’m going off to college next year, so if anything, I’d hand off how to do it to maybe another scout so he may do it,” Chan said.