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Flags at half-staff for Michigan war casualty

Aug. 1, 2006

KALAMAZOO--By order of Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm, U.S. flags on all campuses of Western Michigan University and throughout Michigan will be lowered for one day, Thursday, Aug. 3, in honor of Army Spc. Dennis K. Samson Jr., who died July 24 while on active duty in Iraq.

Spc. Samson, age 24, of Hesperia, Mich., died of injuries sustained from enemy small-arms fire in Taqaddum, Iraq. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Ky.

Flags should return to full-staff Friday, Aug. 4.

In December 2003, Gov. Granholm issued a proclamation requiring U.S. flags to be lowered to half-staff throughout the state of Michigan and on Michigan waters to honor Michigan servicemen and servicewomen killed in the line of duty.

Michigan was among the earlier states to honor its fallen sons and daughters by lowering flags. Sixteen states now follow the practice, including Arkansas, California, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, Oregon, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

Media contact: Thom Myers, (269) 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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