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Flag of Honor of the United States accompanies Santaquin Police Sgt. Bill Hooser at the funeral

SALT LAKE CITY – The United States flag of honor accompanied fallen Santaquin Police Sgt. Bill Hooser at his funeral Monday.

Chris Heisler, the founder of the United States Flag of Honor, personally escorted the flag, sealed in a black casket, to Salt Lake City. The flag arrived at Salt Lake City International Airport on Saturday afternoon.

It was then taken to Santaquin, where an honor guard presented the flag and placed it on a podium next to Hooser’s casket during his funeral on Monday.

Hooser was killed in the line of duty on Sunday, May 5.

Heisler said the flag has a history based on service. It flew during recovery efforts at Ground Zero and on the final Space Shuttle mission, STS-135 Atlantis.

“Since September 11, the same flag has honored more than a thousand police officers, firefighters and military personnel,” Heisler said. “We promise the families that after September 11, ‘We will never forget.'”

The United States flag of honor arrived in Utah on Saturday in honor of the fallen Santaquin Police Department sergeant.  Bill Hoeser.
The United States flag of honor arrived in Utah on Saturday in honor of the fallen Santaquin Police Department sergeant. Bill Hoeser. (Photo: United States Flag of Honor)

Not the first time in Utah

The flag has been to Utah several times. It was presented at the funerals of Officer Doug Barney and Officer Cody Brotherson in 2016 and Officer Nathan Lyday in 2020.

“So (in the family’s darkest hour), if you can bring some kind of brief healing that their loved one will never forget, then that’s what we do.” Heisler said.

Each time the flag moved, it was carried by a brand new set of custom-made gloves and salutes. The flag followed Hooser’s casket during his funeral service Monday.

The first to hold the flag and salute was Officer Jacen Harker of the Provo Police Department. The gloves he wore, along with gloves that other honor guards will wear, will be presented to Hooser’s family.

“I think, specifically for this family, we sympathize with your loss. And we are here to honor your husband, your father. He will not be forgotten,” Heisler said.

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