West Seattle Crime Watch: ‘Priceless’ flag stolen from Beach Drive home

July 5, 2013 at 4:31 pm | In Crime, West Seattle news | 36 Comments

Many places display flags on the 4th of July and other patriotically themed holidays. The West Seattle home of Sharon and Duff Kennedy is among them. Or – has been. The flag they hang every 4th of July was stolen last night; the photo above shows where it had been displayed. This is not just any flag, Sharon explains:

We hung the flag that was given to my husband when his son Roger was laid to rest.

It was the flag presented to him at (Roger’s) burial; he was a Vietnam War casualty.

We hang it every 4th of July, and this year we hung it in a new spot, and after our company left late the night of the 4th, we forgot to take the flag down.

It is a very large flag and we hung it so proudly each year.

The thief took it down carefully, and all the hangers we used are still in place.

We want our flag back, we will buy a replacement flag for the person who stole ours, not ask any questions, no bad feelings.

The flag is about 10 feet wide and about 5 feet long.

The sentimental value is priceless.

Perhaps the thief can simply return it – the Kennedys are at 4234 Beach Drive SW.

36 Comments

  1. Breaks my heart to read this! I really hope that the flag gets returned.

    Comment by Dakota — 4:39 pm July 5, 2013 #

  2. That is just lower than low.

    Comment by Last53BusRider — 4:52 pm July 5, 2013 #

  3. Praying and hoping that this sentimental treasure is returned to your family. So heartbreaking to lose something so precious.

    Comment by LunaPark — 5:25 pm July 5, 2013 #

  4. If some over-imbibed celebrators took that flag and now are aware of the pain they have caused, how can they return it? I would hope that they would just march up to those nice folks and give it back, apologize and thank them for their family’s sacrifice. But, if they cannot do that — is there a way to do a “safe drop?”

    Comment by margaret from vashon — 5:27 pm July 5, 2013 #

  5. It gets worse… and worse down here each 4th.

    I’m so sorry that you were violated, Kennedys.

    Hopefully the flag is simply returned. I’m hoping and praying that it finds it’s way home.

    Comment by Alki Scubafrog — 5:32 pm July 5, 2013 #

  6. SHARED in the Burien area! I hope they get their flag back <3

    Comment by Patty J Lessley-Douglas — 5:33 pm July 5, 2013 #

  7. having military ties to our family; i can fully understand how you are feeling. I hope that some one can read this and somehow get the flag back to its rightful owner…i do agree, maybe if they can turn it in to a local business? fire station? etc…not many cowards will have the courage to knock on the door and say sorry…..but may be able to do what another poster called a “safe drop”…

    Comment by gia — 5:36 pm July 5, 2013 #

  8. the drunk idiots that likely did this probably don’t even remember what they did with the flag..”duuuuude I was soooo wasted last night!”

    Comment by flimflam — 5:58 pm July 5, 2013 #

  9. Keeping my fingers crossed that the flag makes it home.

    Comment by Mama3boys — 6:16 pm July 5, 2013 #

  10. So, so wrong. I hope your flag finds it’s way back home where it belongs.

    Comment by Rockford Columbo — 6:27 pm July 5, 2013 #

  11. My heart breaks for your husband and you. Have no idea why someone would think they could ever LOOK at a flag they had stolen from someone, let alone display it with all it stands for.

    For every person who would do something like that, however, there are others like Gabby from the West Seattle Junction, who found two bags and tracked down my son to return them. One contained the journal he started soon after returning from Iraq. Praying kind-hearted people like that reach out to you and you have a miracle ending of your own.

    Comment by skininit — 6:38 pm July 5, 2013 #

  12. If they don’t get it back, I will be happy to pass along the flag I have from my Grandpa’s funeral. He was a tank driver in WWII and was at the Battle of the Bulge.

    Comment by LAP — 7:39 pm July 5, 2013 #

  13. It’s probably someone local. Hand out fliers door to door with your no questions asked policy.

    Comment by Jeff Martin — 8:54 pm July 5, 2013 #

  14. @ Lap…. Was your grandfather a Black Panther Tank member ? Mine too…. We need to chat !!! : )

    Comment by C — 9:18 pm July 5, 2013 #

  15. LAP, what a lovely gesture, to offer your grandfather’s flag. I so much hope that the Kennedys’ flag is returned – but no matter what, I’m sure they’re touched by your kind offer.

    Comment by Trileigh — 9:37 pm July 5, 2013 #

  16. First of all I want to let you know how sorry I am that your very special flag was taken from you and your husband. My husband and I just went outside and realized that our American flag was also stolen last night…or today. We live 2 houses off of Alki so it likely happened last night when everyone was enjoying the fireworks from the beach. My husband is also a veteran and it is very disheartening to think that someone would walk onto our property and take this symbol of our freedom from us. Has anyone else had their flag stolen?

    Comment by Alki Neighbor — 10:42 pm July 5, 2013 #

  17. In my prayers and hopefully you will receive your flag back. People are such jerks!

    Comment by T — 2:48 am July 6, 2013 #

  18. My heart goes out to you guys I am so very sorry to hear about the theft of your flag and in every single way I would indeed call this flag PRICELESS.

    Comment by TimeToStopThisBS — 6:25 am July 6, 2013 #

  19. Hopefully posting on the blog will help. My wife and I had Christmas yard decorations stolen a couple of years ago and after posting on the blog they were returned a few days later.

    I hope you get your flag back.

    Comment by wsguy — 7:43 am July 6, 2013 #

  20. This story needs to be picked up by the TV stations and/or the Times. I’m sure that this was a crime of opportunity and impulse, probably fueled by drunkenness. Many people don’t realize that some flags have histories such as this one and I think there’s a chance to get it back if the story is spread widely enough. I’m so sorry this happened. This could become a valuable teachable moment with a happy ending, and I hope it can be.

    Comment by Scooterista — 7:44 am July 6, 2013 #

  21. What time did this happen? Was it on a metal rod???

    Comment by Al — 9:30 am July 6, 2013 #

  22. Scooterista, we also distributed it via our social-media channels, which other media follow as well as checking this site frequently. If they care, they’ll pick it up. Given the location – Alki might be visited by people from afar, but Beach Drive, not so much – you’d have to think the thief/thieves are local, and WSB reaches far more people in West Seattle than *any* other news-media outlet of ANY type (plus thousands of people beyond WS). So this isn’t exactly a lack of exposure. The challenge more is the fact that it’s a long holiday weekend. We will bring it around again Monday, if there’s no word of a resolution, when people are back at work etc. – TR

    Comment by WSB — 10:35 am July 6, 2013 #

  23. Part of the problem, as I see it, is that there is a whole faction of revelers on the Fourth who see those flags as nothing more than “decorations” and thus don’t think at all about ramifications when they rip them off on their over-fueled walks home in the wee hours. This flag is sitting in someone’s car or apartment right now. It needs to find its way home. I love the outpouring of goodness from the people in this community as evidenced here. I hope that it helps the Kennedys.

    Comment by margaret from vashon — 2:05 pm July 6, 2013 #

  24. I understand that what your flag represents is priceless, that will never change, no matter who possesses your flag.
    .
    I believe that most of today’s youth are, or want to be, patriotic. They just don’t know how.
    .
    I don’t see this act so much as a violation of the flag’s meaning or history but an act of ignorance.
    .
    I hope your flag is returned.

    Comment by RG — 6:50 pm July 6, 2013 #

  25. @ RG – are you serious? This is a violation of both personal property and heart. You’d be singing a different tune if it was a piece of your property tied deeply to your family’s history that meant as much to you as it did the Kennedy family. I respect that you’re entitled to your opinion however if an item that honored your fallen or deceased child – and i invite you to think about that for a minute – was stolen from your home you might feel differently. These poor people deserve better.

    Comment by TimeToStopThisBS — 8:41 am July 7, 2013 #

  26. Sending sincere condolences to the Kennedys for their loss. Stealing “property” is bad enough, but stealing the symbol of a family’s sacrifice and service is unacceptable on every level. This particular flag is irreplaceable, in spite of LAP’s very thoughtful offer.

    Comment by enviromaven — 10:56 am July 7, 2013 #

  27. To: TimeToStopThisBS
    .
    When my father’s citations, medals, and ribbons were stolen from our house someone shared those very words with me; her words comforted me greatly. I was trying to comfort this family the way I was comforted at such an incomprehensible time for me and my family.
    .
    And no, I’m not “singing a different tune” any longer.
    .
    Besides – maybe it’s because of my volunteer experience at the VA (hospice), or my own service to my country, or having to deal with the stupid loss of a brother (in arms) that makes me want to comfort other families – but please know, that yes, I am serious.

    Comment by RG — 6:18 pm July 7, 2013 #

  28. That is so dishonorable. I hope the flag is returned.

    Comment by Jrex — 11:57 am July 8, 2013 #

  29. The afternoon radio show on KIRO (Ron & Don) just offered $500 for the return of the flag.

    Comment by Dale R — 4:20 pm July 8, 2013 #

  30. The reward is up to $1500 on the Ron and Don show. WSB you may want to re-publish this story so it is at the top of the blog. Ron and Don are telling people to go to WSB for more info.

    Comment by Steph — 6:18 pm July 8, 2013 #

  31. Steph, they did e-mail us a little while ago but I haven’t had time to write something new, the end of the day got chaotic and now I’m at a massive community meeting. It’s in the sidebar list so I hope people will find it there.

    Comment by WSB — 6:39 pm July 8, 2013 #

  32. We also had our flag stolen, probably on the 4th, at 5400 Beach Dr.

    Comment by Amy — 7:39 am July 9, 2013 #

  33. Did some digging around after hearing it on the radio, may have a lead but no info on who to contact anywhere! :<

    Comment by T — 4:08 pm July 9, 2013 #

  34. To contact about what? Police have the report, so if you know where it might be, that would be a good place to start. Or if you know the thief/thieves, encourage them to return it to the Kennedys’ home? I’m writing a bit of an update in the next Crime Watch report…

    Comment by WSB — 4:21 pm July 9, 2013 #

  35. Holy crap. I think I saw this guy in the Gatewood area Friday morning. I was OMW to the ferry and saw a guy with a huge flag draped over his shoulders. He seemed drunk or mental. I couldn’t find a spot to stop my truck and find out what was going on. I had heard the story, and just figured out it was west Seattle.
    I would love to contact someone and figure out who this was. I’m sure the police know him.

    I just left a message with the Southwest precinct burglary unit. Hoping for a call back.
    Does anyone have specific contact info for the officers handling the case?

    Comment by Jeremy — 3:59 pm July 10, 2013 #

  36. Get in touch with VA (VARO} Seattle. Even though
    not the original they may send a replacement.

    Comment by Carter Johnson — 12:08 am July 11, 2013 #

Sorry, comment time is over.

All contents copyright 2014, A Drink of Water and a Story Interactive. Here's how to contact us.
Header image by Nick Adams. ABSOLUTELY NO WSB PHOTO REUSE WITHOUT SITE OWNERS' PERMISSION.
Entries and comments feeds. ^Top^