(CBS) — Military veterans who live in a Near North Side building are upset that their next-door-neighbor — an elementary school — is displaying a tattered American flag they say has been at half-staff for five months.
“You see it’s already beginning to tear. And it’s still at half-mast. And it’s a shame because it’s our pride, it’s our flag,” says Jerry Pritikin.READ MORE: Man Shot, Critically Wounded In Grant Park Near Roosevelt Road
He lives next to the Ruben Salazar Bilingual Center near Wells and Oak Street.
Pritikin’s building is a residence for seniors, and some residents have served in World War II, like Ed Marshall. He’s upset about the torn American flag he says has been hanging outside the Chicago public school — day and night — at half-staff since the death of state comptroller Judy Baar Topinka five months ago.
“It’s a level of disrespect that we seem to see all around us. Nobody cares,” he says.READ MORE: Watchdog Report Says CPD Has Taken Few Steps To Fix Problems With Records Management In Court Cases
Pritikin — also known as the “Bleacher Preacher” at Wrigley Field — says he hates to look at the flag the way it is now.
“I just want to make enough noise so that it’s either taken down or have someone who could put it up and take it down every day,” he says.
Pritikin says he’s spoken to the school about the flag.
“They did change it once when I brought it to their attention, but since then they’ve told me that they’re not allowed to do it. And they said I had to call the board of education or the alderman.”MORE NEWS: Illinois' Last Remaining Sears Store Closing In Schaumburg
WBBM has asked Chicago Public Schools for a response.