Saturday’s soggy ground and gray skies didn’t detract from the Cubs and Scouts of the Harrison area from their solemn commitment to local veterans.
At Prospect Cemetery in Brackenridge, 745 veterans are buried among more than 13,000 occupied plots, which span 13.5 acres.
Pathfinders ensured that every veteran received a flag at their grave before Memorial Day.
“They’re young, so the weight might not be understood,” said Cub Scout Pack 186 leader Dan Dobies.
The Dobies Cub Pack is made up of approximately 22 elementary age Cubs. He said he hopes putting flags on every veteran’s grave is something that sticks with the kids, especially as they learn more.
This is the second year that Boy Scouts have volunteered for flag placement, which is coordinated by the Brackenridge American Legion.
Despite gray skies and intermittent drizzle, turnout was good, Dobies said. The scouts spent about an hour and a half dividing and conquering the acres of tombs.
The cemetery is home to veterans of several conflicts, including three from the Revolutionary War and 245 from the Civil War. There are also veterans of both World Wars and the Persian Gulf.
The cemetery itself was incorporated in 1863.
Dobies said the age of some of the headstones can be lost on younger children. He said he was trying to give the dates and do the math, but 150 or 200 years can be hard for them to understand.
“As they mature and get older, they will learn more and have even more respect,” he said.
Some of the children grasp the seriousness of what they are doing and, more importantly, says Dobies, why they are doing it.
“It’s to honor the people who died to protect us,” 10-year-old Levi Thornton said.
Mateo Kaminski, 9, also said placing the flags was a matter of honor.
“It’s to honor veterans,” he said. “They fought for things like freedom and to end slavery.”