GREENVILLE — Betty (Lease) Brodrick was honored to receive via U.S. mail an American flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 9 this year.
Now, she not only has the flag in her possession but also has a keepsake Certificate of Authenticity signed by the architect of the Capitol. The flag was flown that day in honor of her 71st wedding anniversary with her husband, Robert, who died in 2000.
To Brodrick’s surprise, her daughters — Deborah Shuff of Greenville, Marceena Hamilton of Tennessee and Roberta Ditty of Greenville — made the honor extra special.
Betty said it was spearheaded by Marceena and said she will treasure and encase her items and proudly display them beside the flag she received from the Army National Guard in gratitude for her husband’s service to the country when he passed away.
“The girls got their heads together last summer, and then a week before I received the flag, they told me I was going to get another one,” she said. “The flags are stored in the basement of the Capitol, and the girls emailed their request. You have to submit an application to a senator or representative. They mailed it to Sen. Rob Portman at httpws://www.portman.senate.gov/service/flags-requests.”
The Brodricks were married in 1948 in Arcanum at the EUM Church. They resided in Greenville all but one year of their marriage, when he transferred to Glendale, Calif., to help with the new Sheffield Western Branch of Precision Toolmaking Measurement Instruments.
Betty, who was born May 11, 1930, has an interest in preserving history and music as well as her family.
In addition to her daughters, she has three sons-in-law, John Shuff, Randy Hamilton and Michael Ditty; eight grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
Betty is a member of Wayne Hospital Co. Foundation since 1970, Ohio State Connection (Historical Society), Ohio State Preservation Office, Darke County Historical Society, Versailles Area Historical Society, Darke County Genealogy Society, First Families of Darke County, Ancestor Families of Darke County, Greenville, Ohio, Alumni Association and Daughters of the American Revolution Fort Greenville Chapter.
Thus, it was honorable that this flag flew so close to the DAR National Headquarters Complex in Washington, D.C.
Yes, she is keeping the flag, box and all and even the envelope that the Certificate of Authenticity came in.
“It’s a commercial grade flag and it has a holder, too,” she said.
Brodrick said she was an operator for Ohio Telephone Service for 10 years, had worked at Goodyear and at Wayne Hospital, having worked as a nurse’s aide for seven years and as a unit clerk for more than 24 years.
She and her husband met at the portable skating rink across from the Maid-Rite in 1947.
“He farmed for his father and came to the skating rink,” she recalled. “It was my day off on Sunday, and he came to skate. A couple’s skate came up, and he took my hand. He took me home, and came back two weeks later, and we went to the Hamburger Shop and it started off.”
This flag-flying program began in 1937 and is operated by the architect of the Capitol, which provides American flags flown to members of Congress. The architect fulfills all flag requests from members of the U.S Senate and the House of Representatives. Anyone can request a flag using the online form to honor a person or commemorate a special date such as a military discharge.
Flags are flown daily year-round, weather-permitting, excluding Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. There are special flag poles where all flags are flown. After it is flown over the Capitol, each flag is issued a keepsake Certificate of Authenticity and then shipped to he recipient.
It was noted that the flag was taken to the roof on an elevator which hauls crates of flags up from the basement to the west front of the Capitol. Staffers and interns can sit outside the Republican cloakroom and watch them being raised in the afternoon.
Contact Staff Writer Linda Moody at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (937)569-4315 ext. 1749. Read more news, features and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.