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Flags lowered for Michigan man killed in Afghanistan

June 25, 2008

LANSING, Mich.--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, June 26, in honor of Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Ross "Bud" L. Toles III of Davison, Mich., who died June 18 while on active duty in Afghanistan.

Petty Officer Toles, age 37, died as a result of wounds suffered from an enemy rocket attack in northern Pakika province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to Provincial Reconstruction Team Sharana.

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 first states to honor its fallen sons and daughters by lowering flags. More than 20 states now follow the practice in some form, including Alaska, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

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

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