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Update: Lexington woman continues to fight to fly American flag in yard

By: Tamara Evans Email
By: Tamara Evans Email

A Lexington woman says she just wants to fly her American flag, but her neighborhood's Maintenance Associations says 'no', and they want to force her to take it down.They say the flagpole the flag is on is not allowed in the neighborhood.

Betty Thompson says for 25 years, she has proudly flown our nation's flag in front of her home.

"It's to honor my brother. I had four brothers in the wars of the past century and many other family members and other friends that didn't come back", says Betty Thompson.

Not only does it honor her loved ones, but also our country.

"Our country's at war so I feel like we should show that we are loyal Americans", says Thompson.

So, Betty Thompson says she didn't think twice about putting her flag up when she moved to a home along Jouett Creek Drive last year in Lexington. She says she even checked with her realtor about the rules and regulations of the neighborhood, but was never informed about not having flagpoles in the neighborhood.

"I think it makes the neighborhood look nice", says Thompson.

Thompson says now that she lives next to a school, it was also an important lesson for kids.

"I thought it would say something to them about it was important to be patriotic and support our country", Thompson says.

Now that Betty Thompson has put up her flagpole however, the Chilesburg Maintenance Association has asked her to remove it from her yard saying free standing flagpoles are not permitted. In documents sent to Thompson, they review the neighborhood guidelines, saying smaller flagpoles are allowed if placed on the homes.

"Who can find a problem with flying an American flag in these troubled times we have right now?", says Betty Thompson.

Should Thompson refuse to remove her flagpole, the Association says they will fine Thompson, and have even threatened in letters to get a lawyer involved.

"It's very hurtful. It's disturbing. Anyone who objects should go to a cemetery and see how many lives were given that we can even have freedom of have a home that we can own or control and live in in peace", says Betty Thompson.

Betty Thompson says she is not letting these notices stop her from flying her flag. She says she will continue to keep her flagpole up and is considering whether she needs to get an attorney.

Since this story first aired on 27 NewsFirst at 11:00 on Thursday, Betty says her phone has continued to ring off the hook about this issue.

"I've had disabled veterans call, friends I haven't heard from in years call and everyone is so supportive".

She says she continues to stand her ground on keeping her flagpole up, although the Chilesburg Neighborhood Association says it's against their rules.

"They've compared this to having a basketball goal in your front yard, but I don't even think that is in the same league".

Thompson says, she wants to continue flying her flag in her yard because she believes that is how it should be displayed, and says it is her right to decide where to fly her flag.

"The DAR says the flag is a living object because it represents so many things in our country so it should be displayed properly and certainly respected and I don't think I'm disrespecting the flag at all".

Association officials would not comment on camera today about this situation.

Betty Thompson says, in the meantime, she is standing her ground.

"It's my patriotic duty, if nothing else, thanking those who have preserved our freedom and allowed us to have the right to own property and exercise our patriotism in the way we feel is best.


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