Maj. Stephan Von Jett placed a flag 1 foot in front of a good friends headstone.
“I took a moment and I thought about our friendship and I placed a flag and I think that’s what a lot of Old Guard soldiers are doing today because we all have — many of us, many of us have people that we’ve lost throughout this time and coming together to honor those who have fallen means so much to us,” he said.
Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery is where most service members who died in Iraq and Afghanistan are currently buried.
“Flags In” is an annual tradition that has been going on since 1948 to remember and honor the fallen soldiers who gave up their lives for America.
In only 4 hours, soldiers were able to place small American flags in front of 228,000 headstones.
Capt. Christopher Kittle was interviewed in front of a headstone for his wife’s uncle, Chief Warrant Officer David Gibbs who died in Bosnia in 1999.
“The feeling is very hard to describe, you’re coming here and visiting a tombstone while recognizing the name — a name somebody that means a lot to my family, somebody who is very near and dear to our hearts.” He said.
Capt. Kittle is a member of the Old Guard, the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment that carries out the duties of the Flags In at Arlington every year.
“Being able to plant a flag personally … I just sat there and I was trying to understand the emotion I was feeling because I didn’t know him personally but I just felt very honored,” he said.