HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Two badly tattered American flags flying along Interstate 95 have been removed from a vacant warehouse just north of Hallandale Beach Boulevard. The flags had been ripped to shreds by the weather.
Veterans groups called the flags unpatriotic and pathetic.
"It's a disgrace to us," said William Rick Johnson with U.S. Southern Command. "We fought for the freedom."
On Monday, Local 10 set out to learn who owned the building and find out why the flags hadn't been replaced or removed.
County property records and state corporate filings helped to track down the owner, Michael Weinreb. At first, he denied the flags were attached to his building -- until Local 10 sent him a picture.
When asked what he thought of the flags, Weinreb replied, "I think it's disgusting. I'm going to call my maintenance man right away and find out why those flags are up there."
A man with a ladder arrived at the building 30 minutes later and Weinreb wasn't far behind. He was eager to explain that his previous tenants must have left the flags.
"If I had known, I would have taken them down immediately because it's a veterans situation," Weinrab said. "I don't want to disrespect our vets."
Tommy Kittrell, Sr. removed both tattered flags within a matter of minutes. He said he was proud to do it, in part, because both of his sons are currently serving their country.
Kitrell also promised to dispose of the flags properly.
Weinreb decided to take down the flags altogether rather than replace them. In his opinion, he said, a warehouse district along busy I-95 is probably not the most patriotic place to fly Old Glory in the first place.