But earlier this week, Vincent said he got up as usual, went outside his Turlock home and then made a sad discovery.
Seconds later, Vincent said he located his flag — burned to pieces and melted into his driveway.
“How can they do that?” he asked. “We served. We fought for that flag, and men are dying for that flag.”
Vicent’s flag was displayed on a special flagpole — a dual-design job by his Air Force veteran neighbor Joe Nance, KMAX said.
“It represents three different families,” Nance told the station. “The eagle on top represents Loren’s brother-in-law, who was in the Navy in World War II.”
USMC represents the Marine Corps, which is Loren,” he continued. “And then on the back of the flag pole it says ‘Dad 313965’ — that represents my dad’s serial number in World War II.”
Once Nance learned what happened to Vincent’s flag, he went out and purchased a new one for his neighbor, which now flies at the top of the pole.
“There’s not a flagpole anywhere like that one,” Vincent told the station, his voice breaking on camera.
While Vincent filed a police report, Turlock police told KMAX there have been no other reports of flag vandalism or indications someone was sending a message to the vet.
“They have the right to buy a flag and burn it,” Vincent told the station. “They don’t have the right to come onto my property and take it down and burn it.”
“It’s not just a veteran, because we’re no better than anybody else,” Nance told KMAX. “Any red-blooded American would feel the same way: We would fight for that flag and die for it.”