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Flag Etiquette

Jan 8, 2015
MacGregor 26S, Goman Express 30 Kerr Reservoir
Since our president has ordered flags to fly at half staff for 30 days, I intend to get out for a sail before the time period ends. Now my question is how do I properly fly the ensign on my boat?

The flagstaff which is usually inserted into the mount on the stern has no provision for half mast.

Would it be proper to raise the ensign 1/3 of the way up the topping lift vs the normal 2/3?

Being ex Navy, I am proud to fly the ensign when I sail, but I do insist on doing so properly.
May 24, 2004
CC 30 South Florida
I lowered my home flag to half staff when I heard the news and kept it there until the day after the burial. The President's order only affects Federal buildings. It is a sign of mourning and respect. Others may fly it on a voluntary basis.
Last edited:
Jul 27, 2011
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
The order to fly at half staff for 30 d on the death of a US president has been carried fwd from Eisenhower’s presidency (the President who invoked it). I see many non-federal building masts here w/the flag still at half staff.
Jan 22, 2008
Beneteau 323 Annapolis MD
I recall TV coverage of someone of military importance being buried. The other guy wondered how long you have to fly at half-mast. "until he is in the ground" came the reply. Must be true- I heard it on TV. Now for the president, it may depend on who it was. Just sayin'.