A woman discovered a fallen Marine’s flag at a flea market and was able to return it to his mother after taking her story to social media.
Lanie Brown went to a local flea market to do some shopping, and while looking through the American flags for sale, she noticed that one had black writing all over it.
“We'll always remember the sacrifice you made,” read one of the handwritten messages. “Thank you for being who you were...Rest in peace,” read another.
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Brown decided to buy the flag, which had no price tag, and when she brought it home to show to her Marine son, he explained to her that it was a memorial to a fallen Marine and was signed by everybody in his unit. Eventually, they discovered that the flag was for Lance Cpl. Fred Maciel, who died in 2005, and Brown knew she had to find his family.
"It's priceless," said Brown of the flag, which she spent five dollars on at the flea market. "We would've given her $100 if she'd asked for it."
After posting about her find to Facebook, Brown eventually got in contact with Lance Cpl. Maciel’s mother Patsy and soon after, they arranged to meet at the fallen hero’s grave to present the flag in a ceremony.
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"It's a piece of my son coming back to me," said Patsy Maciel, who says she had no idea that the flag even existed. "It feels great, and I love them for that."