Why are US flags flying at half-staff?

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Gov. Jared Polis made the order at the direction of President Joe Biden.

DENVER — Colorado Gov. Jared Polis ordered flags across the state to be flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset Wednesday as part of Peace Officers Memorial Day.

Polis’ office said in a release Wednesday that he made the order in honor of the law enforcement and peace officers who died in the line of duty, as directed by President Joe Biden.

“Every day, police officers pin on their shields and walk out the door, rushing into harm’s way to keep the rest of us safe,” Biden’s proclamation reads. “Being a police officer is more than what they do — it is who they are. On Peace Officers Memorial Day and during Police Week, we recognize the incredible courage of our Nation’s police officers and honor the fallen heroes, whose ultimate sacrifice we can never repay.”

The release said this year, law enforcement families are also being honored. 

“Every day, they summon courage as their loved ones put on their badges and leave for work, praying for their safe return home,” the proclamation continues. “To those who have lost a loved one who served, I know that no memorial can fill the void left in your heart.  But I hope you find solace in knowing that their memory lives on through you, the community they served, and all those that they inspired through their example. Our Nation will never forget their sacrifice.”

Peace Officers Memorial Day goes back to a joint resolution approved on Oct. 1, 1962. That’s when the president was authorized and requested to designate May 15 of each year as Peace Officers Memorial Day and the week in which it falls as Police Week. 

“I call upon all Americans to observe these events with appropriate ceremonies and activities and salute our Nation’s brave law enforcement officers and remember their peace officer brothers and sisters who have given their last full measure of devotion in the line of duty,” the proclamation says.

The proclamation does not apply solely to government buildings. Biden encouraged all Americans to display their flags at half-staff at their homes and businesses.

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Why are US flags flying at half-staff?

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