What is the Difference Between Half-Staff and Half-Mast?
How Long Should a Flag be Flown at Half Staff?The president or governor will declare when and how long the flag will remain at half-staff in the proclamation. However, even if the flag should remain at half-staff for multiple days, the flag is only intended to be flown from sunrise to sunset each day.
How Do I Fly My Flag At Half-Staff?When raising the American flag into a half-staff position, bring it to the top of the pole for just a moment before bringing it down halfway. You will do the same thing at sunset and bring it to the top of the pole before bringing it down for the night. The flag is typically flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset, except for Memorial Day, when it's from sunrise to noon.
Can't Fly the American Flag at Half Staff?You can buy a mourning bow or mourning streamer for the top of your pole that will represent half-staff.
When are Set Times That the Flags Should be at Half-Staff?For more information about flag flying holidays check out our flag flying holidays chart or download our free calendar.
Special Flag Flying Holidays
|TIME OF YEAR||HOLIDAY|
|May 15th||Peace Officers Memorial Day|
|The Last Monday in May||Memorial Day|
|September 11th||Patriot Day|
|The First Sunday in October||Fallen Firefighters Day|
|December 7th||Pearl Harbor Day|
After the Death of an Elected Official
|DURATION OF HALF-STAFF||ELECTED OFFICIAL|
|Day of Death until Interment|
|Day of Death and Day After||
Commonwealth of Puerto Rico
|Day of Death until Interment
(in the specific state, territory,
The president may order the flag to be flown at half-staff to mark the death of other officials, former officials, or foreign dignitaries. In addition to these occasions, the president may order half-staff display of the flag after other tragic events.