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Threads of continuity

Salvaged flag emblem of hope in KY

The Mayfield, KY, Post Office’s U.S. flag survived a devastating tornado attack on the town in December 2021 and is now displayed in a case, which will have a prominent place in the Post Office after it is reconstructed.

After a twister hit the historic Mayfield, KY, Post Office in December 2021, the building was deemed a total loss.

To give an idea of how powerful the EF4 tornado was, an LLV from the site was whooshed up and deposited more than six miles away.

But among the debris, a group of postal workers and volunteers discovered that the Post Office’s U.S. flag — tattered and torn but still in one piece — survived.

“It was an emotional day for us,” said Ginger Rosenbury, a maintenance manager who assisted with recovery and cleanup. When the team found the flag, they knew they wanted to do something special for Mayfield Postmaster Joshua Jenkins.

“We witnessed how he put his whole heart and soul into helping his employees and the Postal Service” after the storm, she said.

George Grenon, a field maintenance operations supervisor, built a case to house the flag and included a piece of wood beam from the debris in the frame’s construction. Steve Dadisman, an area maintenance technician, added a plexiglass front to protect the flag.

A plaque with a message for Mayfield’s employees reads: “We’re beaten and battered but we are not broken.”

Those employees — who are currently working in a temporary site in Mayfield after spending five months at the Paducah, KY, Processing and Distribution Center 35 miles away — may not have much longer to wait to see the flag in its full glory. Groundbreaking on reconstruction is expected to begin in late February.

The lobby for the reconstructed building will be “huge,” Jenkins said, with 22-foot ceilings that will display not only the framed flag but other memorabilia that was salvaged from the wreckage.