Alumni association honors borough pair

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Dorothy Knowles, left, Burgess Robert Burns, and Naugatuck High School Alumni Association Terry Swanson salute the flag during a flag raising ceremony July 2 at Naugatuck High School’s Veterans Field. The association dedicated the flag in honor of Knowles and Burns. –ELIO GUGLIOTTI

NAUGATUCK — A new American flag now flies over Veterans Monument at Naugatuck High School’s Veterans Field in honor of lifelong borough residents Dorothy Knowles and Robert Burns.

The Naugatuck High School Alumni Association dedicated the flag to Knowles and Burns to recognize all they have done for Naugatuck and the veterans community in the borough.

Kevin Knowles, a member of the association, explained the association noticed the previous flag was getting a little bit tattered. Rather then simply raise a new flag, the association decided to honor Knowles and Burns with the dedication, he said.

“It’s as profound as it is simple,” said Knowles about the dedication.

Burns, a longtime burgess and member of Naugatuck High’s Class of 1944, is a U.S. Navy veteran and served during World War II and the Korean War. In May, Burns lead Naugatuck’s Memorial Day parade as grand marshal. Knowles, who is a member of Naugatuck High’s Class of 1944, is heavily involved in local veterans’ organizations and has marched in the Memorial Day parade for 44 straight years.

On the evening of July 2, the alumni association held a flag raising ceremony at Veterans Field to honor the pair. Friends, family, as well as local and state dignitaries gathered in front of Veterans Monument for the ceremony.

“I can’t think of a better place to present this flag than here at Veterans Field. This high school and veterans’ issues have meant so much to [Knowles and Burns] over the years that it’s only fitting that we have this flag raising here,” Mayor Robert Mezzo said.