Military and Police

A Beautiful 4th of July Gesture: Marysville Cop Stops to Fix Homeowner’s American Flag

It was a simple, heartwarming, and patriotic gesture that took less than one minute, but the ripples are being felt in this western Washington State community and beyond.

On Independence Day 2018, Marysville (WA) police Officer Dave Negron was on patrol when, while driving his police cruiser on a residential street, he noticed a homeowner’s American flag mounted on the house near the driveway was touching the ground.

The officer stopped his patrol car and got out to investigate. He found that the flag mount had broken and wouldn’t hold the flag high enough to keep it from dragging on the ground.

According to the American Legion, “The Flag Code states that the flag should not touch anything beneath it, including the ground.” This is to prevent it from becoming soiled or damaged.

A home surveillance camera video recorded the officer attempting to replace the flag properly in it’s holder, but the bracket was too damaged. So, the officer, with touching reverence, carefully rolled the flag around the flagpole. He then leaned it up against the house near the front door, so the flag would not touch the ground.

Saying the officer deserved recognition for his “good deed,” Ben Rieman, the homeowner, said he’d watched the surveillance video after finding the flag rolled up by the front door.

Rieman said he shared the video on a local Facebook community page. He wanted to bring attention to the officer’s kind and patriotic act. “I would like to THANK greatly to an Officer of the Marysville Police department!!!!” Rieman posted to the Snohomish County Crime and Community Facebook group. He continued, “It just so happens I was out and about enjoying my 4th of July, when my American Flag had some how fell to the ground.” Sharon Gellespie wrote in the page, “God bless this cop.”

According to, Reiman said, “I wish I could thank him personally. That’s a real American to me!”

It’s always great to see cops getting recognition for the “little” things they do. From my experience, Officer Negron’s actions mirror many of his brother and sister law enforcement officers across the country who perform similar kindnesses for people every day. But people don’t tend to whip out the cameras for police officers’ kind acts.

Let’s be happy that a homeowner’s surveillance camera, rather than capturing a bad guy doing a bad thing, captured a very good guy doing a very good thing.

The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own and are not the view of OpsLens which seeks to provide a platform for experience-driven commentary on today's trending headlines in the U.S. and around the world. Have a different opinion or something more to add on this topic? Contact us for guidelines on submitting your own experience-driven commentary.
Steve Pomper

Steve Pomper is an OpsLens contributor, a retired Seattle police officer, and the author of four non-fiction books, including De-Policing America: A Street Cop’s View of the Anti-Police State. You can read a review of this new book in Front Page Magazine and listen to an interview with Steve on the Joe Pags Show. Steve was a field-training officer, on the East Precinct Community Police Team, and served his entire career on the streets. He has a BA in English Language and Literature. He enjoys spending time with his kids and grand-kids. He loves to ride his Harley, hike, and cycle with his wife, Jody, a retired firefighter. You can find out more about Steve and send him comments and questions at

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