Virginia veteran wins battle with homeowners’ association for flying the American flag

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CULPEPPER, Va. (CNN NEWSOURCE / WFXR) – A veteran of the Marines has found himself in the middle of a battle he never expected to fight in Virginia: a battle to fly the American flag.

Richard Jenkins’ Home Owners Association (HOA) initially wanted him to remove not only his 20-foot flagpole, but the American flag as well.

“It means freedom,” Jenkins said. “A lot of people I know fought for this flag.”

When the 77-year-old Marine Corps veteran received an American flag as a Father’s Day gift, he had no idea it would spark such controversy.

“As Americans, everyone should have the right to put a flag in the ground,” Jenkins said.

However, the Willow Shade Homeowners’ Association says Jenkins did not get the proper approval for the 20-foot post, which the Culpepper HOA wants to remove.

According to a neighbor, Wally Bunker, the HOA does not have guidelines for flags.

“I was the president of the HOA for eight years and the flag issue was never raised,” Bunker said.

After Jenkins raised his flag, another neighbor set up his own flag pole across the street. As of Thursday, August 13, the neighborhood has reportedly seen a total of eight flags, and none of the flag neighbors intended to remove them.

“When he installed one, I said I would put one on too,” said James W. Jenkins, another Culpepper resident. “What’s the problem? It’s too pretty to take apart. Everyone likes to look at my flag.

The HOA ultimately put the matter to a vote, deciding 3-2 that there would be no restrictions on the flags.

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