Conn. FD's thin red line flag stolen during call, union's letter to thief goes viral
Middletown Professional Firefighters Local 1073 has received multiple offers from across the country to replace the flag after their post was shared 10,000 times
By Laura French
MIDDLETOWN, Conn. — A letter from Connecticut firefighters to the person who cut a thin red line flag from their engine during a call has gone viral on Facebook.
Middletown Professional Firefighters Local 1073 posted the message Saturday after the flag was stolen during a response to an oven fire at Wesleyan University on Friday afternoon. In the letter to the thief (or thieves), the "men and women of Middletown Professional Firefighters Local 1073" question the motivation behind stealing something used to "honor the sacrifices made by those members who have gone before us."
"We have to assume you really liked the flag, or maybe you thought it might be funny or cool, you know, something for the 'Gram or the Tik Tok," the post reads. "We're a little worried that you might have cut it down to 'fight oppression' or whatever. If that was your motivator, you clearly don't understand the meaning behind the thin red line."
The post goes on to say that the flag is not a political statement, despite the fact that "some people have an issue with the American flag and the thin blue and even the thin red line these days."
The firefighters also point out the consequences of stealing and defacing city property and say whoever committed the theft owes them a new flag or at least the money to pay for it.
"Don't worry, we take Venmo," the post states.
The post has garnered more than 10,000 shares and 1,000 comments since it was published, and in an update, the union stated, "We are blown away and truly humbled at the sheer volume of people from around the state and country who have messaged us asking if they can replace the flag or donate in some way."
The update states that the flag has already been replaced but that the union encourages supporters to donate to the IAFF Fallen Firefighters Memorial or the Connecticut Fallen Firefighters Memorial.
Read the full post below:
UPDATE 2: We noticed that a few people are suggesting a Wesleyan student could be responsible. We have no idea yet who...Posted by City of Middletown Professional Firefighters Local 1073 on Saturday, October 17, 2020