American flag set ablaze at school - and you won't believe how students react

by Todd Starnes / Fox News |

HEBER CITY, Utah (Christian Examiner) — A reader alerted me to this incredible story of patriotism at a high school in Heber City, Utah:

Student Ben Schofield is known around Wasatch High School for his American spirit. He flies an American flag from the back of his red pickup truck.

"I think it's really important," Ben told Fox 13 in Salt Lake City. "It's not just the material part of the flag, it's the meaning behind it."

The other day someone set fire to Ben's flag in the school parking lot. Part of his truck was scorched by the blaze.

Some of his classmates saw what happened and rushed over to extinguish the fire.

"They pulled into the parking lot and they saw it on fire so they stopped and got it out and then they went and told the office," Ben told Fox 13 in Salt Lake City.

Police and the school district are investigating - they believe another student may be responsible. The motive is unclear.

The following day - students at Wasatch High School - decided to take a stand. Several dozen young people rallied at a nearby Wal-Mart. They wore red, white and blue and most proudly flew Old Glory.

Samantha Emmanuel, one of the participating students, said she and the others were appalled at the vandalism.

"There are thousands and thousands of soldiers (in) a couple different countries right now fighting for you to come to school and then you just burned (the flag) up like that?" student Samantha Emmanuel told television station KSL.

The young patriots boldly sent a message to those who might deface or desecrate the U.S. flag -- we will not be silenced nor will we be bullied.

And sure enough -- the day after his flag was desecrated, Ben showed up to school with the Star-Spangled Banner proudly waving on a post in the truck bed.

"We're just showing that we can fly our flags and we always will," Ben declared.

President Ronald Reagan once said that "freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction."

We owe a debt of gratitude to the moms and dads and educators in Heber City, Utah for raising up a new generation of patriots willing to defend freedom.

Todd Starnes is host of Fox News & Commentary, heard on hundreds of radio stations. Sign up for his American Dispatch newsletter, be sure to join hisFacebook page, and follow him on Twitter. His latest book is "God Less America."