By Scott Liles
Twin Lakes Area residents wishing to dispose of worn, tattered or faded American flags may now do so by leaving them in a flag deposit box inside the Conner Family Funeral Home and Cremation Center.
The cedar box, which was unveiled Tuesday morning, was built by Dean Gleghorn in honor of his father, A.V. Gleghorn, who served in the Army during World War I.
According to U.S. Flag Code, an American flag that is worn or tattered beyond repair should be retired in a respectful and dignified manner, preferably by burning. Flags left in the funeral home’s flag box will draped over a veteran’s casket and cremated with the veteran, Conner Funeral Home owner and office manager Jackie Conner said.
“We heard about a couple of funeral homes up north doing this, and thought it would be a good service to offer our community,” she said. “The Flag Code stresses the respect that must be shown when destroying the flag. We felt it would show the utmost respect to both the veteran and the flag this way.”
Gleghorn is a retired school teacher, coach and administrator that works part-time at the funeral home and at the Conner family’s other business, High Country Motors in Mountain Home. He also has his own woodworking shop.
The flag deposit box is made from West Coast cedar and red cedar, he said. He estimated that building the box took about a week, with him working on it for a couple hours each day.
“I don’t think there’s anyone more patriotic than our veterans,” he said.
An inscription on the box reads, “Constructed by Dean Gleghorn, in memory of his father A.V. Gleghorn. World War I veteran 1896-1980.”
Dean Gleghorn said his father was born in Wiseman, a small community along the Strawberry River in the northeast corner of Izard County. A.V. Gleghorn enlisted in the Army and trained at Camp Pike near Little Rock. World War I ended before he was assigned overseas, Dean Gleghorn said.
“He didn’t really talk much about the war,” Dean Gleghorn said. “One thing he did talk about was all the bayonet training they went through; that was one thing they really practiced.”
After the war, A.V. Gleghorn operated a general store in the rural community of Day in northeastern Izard County for 33 years.
“He let people buy on credit, everyone did back then,” Dean Gleghorn said. “In all those years, he lost only one bill – $14 bill for groceries. The man’s father offered to pay it off, and dad would not take it; he wanted the man to pay it himself.”
He also served as the community’s postmaster, and help start the school at Violet Hill, a place Dean Gleghorn would later serve as superintendent.
“He was a community leader, and a good business man,” Dean Gleghorn said. “He bought five farms over the years. The last 40 acres he bought, I think he paid $150 for it. That’s the highest he ever paid for a farm.”
Flag Deposit Box
Conner Family Funeral Home
2833 Hwy. 62 West