Providence, RI - Rhode Island and U.S. flags may be returned to full-staff following the burial this afternoon of Rhode Island National Guard Sergeant Dennis P. Weichel, Jr.
On Friday, March 23, Governor Chafee ordered flags throughout the state flown at half-staff following news of Sergeant Weichel's death from injuries sustained in an accident while conducting security operations in Laghman Province, Afghanistan. The Governor's order applied to both U.S. and state flags on all public buildings in the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.
The Governor also issued the following statement, prior to Sergeant Weichel's posthumous promotion from the rank of Specialist to Sergeant on March 26.
"Specialist Dennis Weichel's life was marked by bravery, selflessness, and commitment to others – and unfortunately it was in demonstrating these remarkable characteristics that it was lost. Specialist Weichel will be remembered by his fellow soldiers and commanding officers as a dedicated member of the Rhode Island National Guard. He will be remembered by friends and family as a devoted father to Nicholas, Hope, and Madison and a beloved son to Linda and Dennis. And he will be remembered, and mourned, by people across our state as a great Rhode Islander. Specialist Weichel will be deeply missed, and his loved ones are in my thoughts during this difficult time. I hope that they are able to find some comfort in their many fine memories of him," Governor Chafee said.