President Barack Obama called for flags to be lowered at all United States government institutions through Tuesday in response to the mass shooting in Connecticut Friday morning.
However, on Friday, the Enterprise Lions Club said they would not be lowering their giant flag off of Interstate 5 in Redding. The Enterprise Lions Club flag keeper Mike Ferrier said originally that the flag would not be lowered because it was dedicated for a specific purpose.
"Our flag is a memorial to those that give service, we leave it high to honor them and we lower the flag in respect to family members when there is an incident and that's about the only time the flag gets lowered."
On Saturday morning, it appeared on Facebook that the Lions Club had decided to change its mind after many disapproving comments from community members.
The Enterprise Lions Club issued this statement on its Facebook:
"The Giant Flag is being lowered to half-staff this morning. Thank you to all those who offered their opinions. It will be raised at sunset on the 18th. Our prayers are with the families and friends in Newtown."
The flag was dedicated ten years ago on the first anniversary of September 11th and flies to honor those who give service to our country.
The Lions Club typically only lowers the flag half-staff on servicemen holidays like Memorial Day, Patriot Day, and Pearl Harbor Day. Ferrier said that because the flag is on private property, the Lions Club can choose when they want to lower the flag.
On Friday on the "Giant American Flag-Enterprise Lions Club" Facebook page, Ferrier had said,
"We, at The Enterprise Lions Club, mourn the losses in Connecticut today... It will stay at full staff and we commend all those who have had to deal with this tragic situation."
Ferrier wanted to make clear that the club in no way wants to take away from remembering those lost in Connecticut today, but did not want to take away the meaning of what the flag was originally intended for.
When community members heard about the flag not being lowered, many of them took to social media, threatening to never donate to the organization again and some pleading with the Lions Club to lower the flag in honor of the children and school faculty who were killed.