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American flag stolen from WWII veteran's Marlow home

(Source KSWO) (Source KSWO)

MARLOW, OK (KSWO) - A 97-year-old World War Two veteran said an American flag he fought to protect has been stolen out of his front yard.

Retired Master Sergeant Macel Bradford served in the Air Force from 1939 until 1959, spending several years in New Mexico working on the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima. Bradford has spent his retirement in Marlow, where he has constantly flown an American flag outside---That is, until last weekend, when his flag was stolen from his yard.

Bradford said to him, the American flag represents his service, which is why he has flown one in his yard since the day he moved to Marlow 25 years ago.

"It means a whole lot to me to fly a flag....more people ought to do it," Bradford said.

Since he's been there, his flag has been replaced a few times, but last weekend, Bradford came across a problem he has never had before.

"Sometime Saturday, somebody took that flag. I don't know who wanted it,” Bradford said.

Bradford said his guess is that the flag was taken by kids in the area.

"They probably needed it more than I did but there's nothing I can do,” Bradford said.

Bradford said to him, that flag represents a military career working on one of the most important projects in American history.

"I did 20 years Air Force with over 10,000 hours flying time. And I was on the atomic bomb project,” Bradford said.

Bradford worked on the atomic bomb project in New Mexico for several years, even personally working with the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima.

"People have asked me, don't you feel bad about that, working on that project, killing all them people. I said yes, I do feel bad,” Bradford said. “I said I feel sorry for all the people that were killed. Men, women, children, everything. But I said it saved us approximately a million people."

Bradford then spent time in Guam and said he flew everywhere in Europe before ultimately settling down at a peaceful home in Marlow that, until last weekend, had an American flag greeting you as you pulled into the driveway. Bradford said now he just hopes whoever took the flag can learn an important lesson.

"You study about that flag. There's a lot of material on it and what it stands for,” Bradford said. “And you should read and understand what it means to everyone here in America. That's why you should leave it alone and protect it."

Bradford said he will not let any thieves discourage him from flying his flag, saying it shouldn't be long before he has that flag replaced.

"I'm going to keep it until I die. I'll have a flag going out there,” Bradford said.

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