Legionnaire remembered for his Medal of Honor flag design

Legionnaire remembered for his Medal of Honor flag design

Bill Kendall had 21 continuous years in The American Legion as a member of the local Post 11 in Jefferson, Iowa. Kendall, who was recently laid to rest at 83, was a retired U.S. Army Special Forces first sergeant who served in the Vietnam War. In his obituary and by members of Post 11, Kendall was recognized for his military accomplishments and his continued service to veterans, including his design of the Medal of Honor flag.

Kendall worked on the design of the flag to honor Capt. Darrell R. Lindsay, a World War II veteran from Jefferson who posthumously received the Medal of Honor. Past Post 11 Commander Jim Andrew said Kendall personally sewed the prototype which featured a blue field with 13 stars arranged in the same formation that appears on the Medal of Honor ribbon. Former Iowa Congressman Tom Latham introduced legislation in June 2002 that recommended Kendall’s design of the flag to become the official Medal of Honor flag. On Oct. 21, 2002, President George W. Bush signed the bill into law.

“Bill was a super soldier right up to the day he died,” said Andrew, during Kendall’s celebration of life service. “Bill was always willing to march into the courthouse or a VA hospital and personally represent the interests of a hurting or ailing veteran. He personally developed and updated the Greene County Honor Roll which lists every veteran from the county and their years of service.”

Andrew said Kendall placed flags at veterans graves in Jefferson cemeteries for Memorial Day. He would inspect the flags and with his sewing machine stitch up any torn areas so they would be ready to be placed at gravesites the following year.

“The very best way we can honor Bill’s many accomplishments is to take up his mission to continue,” Andrew said. “He set a wonderful example of devotion and service that all of us would be well to emulate and continue.”