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article imageThe meaning of the Flagged Draped Coffin

By Cynthia Trowbridge     May 28, 2007 in World
Have you ever wondered about the meaning of the flag draped coffin?
Have you ever watched someone fold the U.S. flag at a funeral of a person who had served in the military? Did you wonder why it was folded like that?
As today is Memorial Day for Americans I thought a good addition to my article on the history of this day would be to understand the meaning of the flag draped coffin. A flag is laid on the coffin of someone who has been in the military. The flag is given to the widow or widower. At a military funeral the 21-gun salute is for the sum of the numbers in the year 1776. If you have ever been to the funeral of someone who has served in the military you will watch as the honor guard pays meticulous attention to folding the United States of America's flag correctly 13 times.
Here are the meanings for the thirteen folds.
The 1st fold
of the flag is a symbol of life.
The 2nd fold
is a symbol of the belief in eternal life.
The 3rd fold
is made in honor and remembrance of the veterans departing the ranks who gave a portion of their lives for the defense of the country to attain peace throughout the world.
The 4th fold
represents the weaker nature, for as American citizens trusting in God, it is to Him we turn in times of peace as well as in time of war for His divine guidance.
The 5th fold
is a tribute to the country, for in the words of Stephen Decatur, “Our Country, in dealing with other countries, may she always be right; but it is still our country, right or wrong.”
The 6th fold
is for where people’s hearts lie. It is with their heart that They pledge allegiance to the flag of the United! States Of America, and the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.
The 7th fold
is a tribute to its Armed Forces, for it is through the Armed Forces that they protect their country and their flag against all her enemies, whether they be found within or without the boundaries of their republic.
The 8th fold
is a tribute to the one who entered into the valley of the shadow of death, that we might see the light of day.!
The 9th fold
is a tribute to womanhood, and Mothers. For it has been through their faith, their love, loyalty and devotion that the character of the men and women who have made this country great has been molded.
The 10th fold
is a tribute to the father, for he, too, has given his sons and daughters for the defense of their country since they were first born.
The 11th fold
represents the lower portion of the seal of King David and King Solomon and glorifies in the Hebrews eyes, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
The 12th fold
represents an emblem of eternity and glorifies, in the Christians eyes, God the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit.
The 13th fold
or when the flag is completely folded, the stars are uppermost reminding them of their nations motto, “In God We Trust.”
After the flag is completely folded and tucked in, it takes on the appearance of a cocked hat, ever reminding us of the soldiers who served under General George Washington, and the Sailors and Marines who served under Captain John Paul Jones, who were followed by their comrades and shipmates in the Armed Forces of the United States, preserving for them the rights, privileges and freedoms they enjoy today.
There are some traditions and ways of doing things that have deep meaning. In the future, you’ll see flags folded and now you will know why.
More about Flag draped coffin, Meaning, Soldier
 
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