Army veteran continues 40-year tradition of setting up American flags down his street and driveway

Local News

Thomas Boyd is a retired Army Colonel who celebrates Veterans Day and other military holidays in a special way. He sets up a line of American flags, stretching from the main road, down his road, and into his driveway. It’s a tradition he’s carried on at his Moline home for 40 years now.

“It brings back a lot of memories,” Boyd said. “I put those flags out for the day, and then like some of the Army holidays, I’ll alternate them with Army flags. Some years it’s not pleasant doing it, but the results are.”

Boyd served for 23 years in the Army, spending his last few years of active duty at the Rock Island Arsenal. When his time in the Army came to a close, he married his wife, Brenda, and they stayed right here in the Quad Cities.

One of the main reasons Boyd sets his flags up is to remember his late friends he served with, some of whom were at the Rock Island Arsenal.

“A lot of my peers, cohorts in crime, are no longer with us,” Boyd said. “So it’s a time to remember.”

Because of that, Boyd holds this tradition close to his heart, and he wouldn’t change a thing.

“It’s a day to look back and see where you’ve been, and all the wonderful people I’ve worked with,” Boyd said. “I have no regrets.”

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