Gov. Branstad orders flags at half-staff to honor Army Staff Sgt. Steve Blass
(DES MOINES) – Gov. Branstad is ordering all flags in the state to be flown at half-staff from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26, 2013, to honor Army Staff Sgt. Steve Blass, 27, or Estherville, who died in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash in Kandahar, Afghanistan, on Monday, March 11.
Blass’ funeral will be held at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26, 2013 at the Estherville High School Gym. Brig. Gen. Derek Hill, Deputy Adjutant General of the Iowa National Guard, will be in attendance to represent the administration.
The governor’s directive applies to all U.S. and state flags under the control of the state. H.R. 692, signed in 2007, requires federal government agencies in the state to comply with the governor’s executive order that the U.S. flag be flown at half-staff in the event of the death of a member of the Armed Forces.
Flags will be at half-staff on the state Capitol building and on flag displays in the Capitol complex, and upon all public buildings, grounds, and facilities throughout the state. Individuals, businesses, schools, municipalities, counties and other government subdivisions are encouraged to fly the flag at half-staff for the same length of time as a sign of respect.