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Hundreds of scouts adorn Nashville National Cemetery with flags for Memorial Day weekend

Scouts place flags for Memorial Day
Posted at 2:00 PM, May 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-28 19:51:53-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — On hallowed grounds such as these, it can be somber and quiet. That is, except for this weekend, when the final resting places of 35,000 Middle Tennessee veterans spring back to life.

"Try to do it as centered as you can on it," says Ezra Lashlee, an Eagle Scout from Donelson. "Yea, about like that."

Hundreds of Middle Tennessee Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts go row by row, placing American flags at each marker.

"I’ve been doing this since I was about… oh…about 6 I guess. I’m 17 now," said Lashlee.

Lashlee says he enjoys showing the younger scouts how it's done.

"Showing them how to be respectful, how to pay their respects," he said.

Scouts place flags for Memorial Day
Boy Scouts Troop 777 out of Mt. Juliet plant flags at Nashville National Cemetery, in honor of Memorial Day.

Boy Scouts Troop 777 of Mt. Juliet accompanied Lashlee, adorning flags in the oldest portion of the Nashville National Cemetery. Some of the remains date back to the Civil War, meaning many of the markers lack a name. But they won't go without a flag.

"Even if it’s just a placeholder, we’re still honoring them because they served our country and made many sacrifices," said 11-year-old Rhett Thomas, a Boy Scout in Troop 777.

A huge task like this can feel daunting.

"I thought it was like, so many tombstones," said Thomas.

But in just a matter of minutes, the field of green and white became rife with red, white and blue.

"I mean look at this, we’re probably about halfway done," said Lashlee. "It takes a lot less time than you think."

flags at the nashville national cemetary

The exercise is designed to be more than just a stunning display of patriotism.

"In our culture, we kind of see it as just another holiday sometimes. A day off from work and things," said Lashlee.

To Lashlee, it serves as a reminder to remember all of the heroes that rest in this hallowed ground.

"Really enjoyed coming out and just giving some time to pay respects to the people who deserve it," he said.

Planting flags at Nashville National Cemetery was just one of more than 30 events planned across our region by Middle Tennessee scouts.