Flags lowered to honor fallen soldier

LANSING — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has ordered U.S. and Michigan flags within the State Capitol Complex and on all state buildings to be lowered to half-staff today to honor the service of Army Pfc. Michael “Mikey” Thomason and coincide with his military funeral. Michigan residents, businesses, schools, local governments and other organizations also are encouraged to display the flag at half-staff.

“We owe Pfc. Thomason a tremendous debt of gratitude as he made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation,” Whitmer said. “Our state has lost a hero, and my heart goes out to his family during this difficult time.”

A resident of Lincoln Park, Pfc. Thomason was currently serving with the 1st Brigade Combat Team of the 101st Airborne Division stationed out of Fort Campbell in Kentucky. Pfc. Thomason died Sunday, April 28 at the age of 28 from injuries sustained in Kobani, Syria, where he was deployed in support of Operation Inherent Resolve.

During his service, Pfc. Thomason was awarded two Army Commendation Medals, including one with a “C” device for combat, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, Operation Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal with Bronze Service Star, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon and the Overseas Service Ribbon.

To lower flags to half-staff, flags should be hoisted first to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The process is reversed before the flag is lowered for the day.

Flags should be returned to full-staff on Friday.