Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images
I had the honor of taking part in this annual tradition when I was in the Army with the 3rd Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) at Fort Myer, VA. Here is the official description of "Flags In" from the official website of Arlington Cemetery:
This tradition, known as "flags in," has been conducted annually since The Old Guard was designated as the Army's official ceremonial unit in 1948. Every available soldier in the 3rd U.S. Infantry participates, placing small American flags one foot in front and centered before each grave marker.
During an approximately three-hour period, the soldiers place flags in front of more than 260,000 gravestones and about 7,300 niches at the cemetery's columbarium. Another 13,500 flags are placed at the Soldier's and Airmen's Cemetery. As part of this yearly memorial activity, Old Guard soldiers remain in the cemetery throughout the weekend, ensuring that a flag remains at each gravestone.
This video is from 5/22/14.
I've also included a video in this post of 'Flags In' from last year at the Tomb of the Unknowns, another annual tradition.
Please take time this weekend to remember and honor the brave men and women that made the ultimate sacrifice for our country and freedom.