Before hundreds of U.S. troop supporters rallied at the Capitol, about a dozen veterans and others buried the remnants of the "C" Hill flag Wednesday morning in a quiet-but-patriotic ceremony.
Ceremony organizer Tod Jennings of the American Legion said the flag remnants could not be burned, as is usually done, because they consist mostly of plastic and were torn by the elements.
The national policy regarding damaged flags calls for a ceremony to retire them.
"The Flag Code says you should burn it, but you can bury the remnants," said Jennings, a 21-year U.S. Air Force veteran.
Landfill foreman Allen Annette found an area where no garbage had been buried and used a tractor to dig a pit to deposit the flag remnants.
Jennings, his 4-year-old son Noah and the others carried the remnants to the pit, while an intact U.S. flag fluttered in the background.
Dan Mooney worked with Gilbert Ayarbe and volunteers to install the 120- by-67-foot flag after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, D.C.
It was hoped the "C" Hill flag would last up to seven years, Mooney said.
But winter snow and gales tore up the hillside banner. When the snow melted, many residents wondered what happened to the flag, which could be seen throughout Carson City.
Efforts to replace the flag and raise funds for a new one have been under way since January.
Jennings said the new flag may be dedicated on Memorial Day.
Mooney said stronger materials, such as aluminite, will be used this time to construct the flag.