Roofers in the state of Maine dropped their hammers and stood up to show their respect for the national anthem on Saturday, Oct. 14.
In doing so, the roofers unknowingly posed for a photo that symbolizes one side of the controversial debate over the “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Michelle Lyons Cossar, an Old Town resident who took the photo, told Fox News on Monday, Oct. 16, that the three men, all stood for the national anthem “even though they didn’t have to.” They were working nearby Waterville High School’s football field.
Cossar explained how she was standing for the anthem before the start of Saturday’s football game when she heard someone in the stands point out that the workers had also risen.
“When I looked over the fence, I saw them standing and respecting the flag,” she told Fox News. It was at that moment she decided to take a picture of the roofers.
“I just thought the world could use a little more of that right now,” she added.
The photo shows the three men standing on a roof with their right hands over their hearts during the anthem. They appeared to be in the middle of work.
Cossar wrote in the photo’s description: “Standing for the National Anthem at the Old Town Waterville football game today and from behind the stands we hear, ‘Hey, look! They aren’t kneeling.’ When I turn to see who said it, this is what I saw … three men roofing a house and respecting the flag.”
As of writing on Tuesday morning, Oct. 17, Cossar’s photo has been shared over 876 times and garnered over 946 reactions.
The men in the photo are identified as Dwayne Harrison, Danny Thyng, and James Scruggs, according to Cossar.
Harrison, the man on the far right of the photo later told Fox News that for him standing for the anthem was the “right thing to do.”
“It is a respect thing for myself—we did not do this to prove a point,” Harrison said. He also added that he wasn’t aware that a photo had been taken of them.
A resident of Waterville, Shanon Gurski Dixon later shared Cossar’s picture to her own Facebook page.
Dixon told Fox News that she hopes to find the men one day and thank them for “being such good role models to our youth.”
Standing for the anthem has become a controversial issue in the NFL, as more players in recent months knelt during the anthem to protest police brutality against minorities.
Just yesterday Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said he thinks NFL players should stop protesting during the national anthem and instead speak out against domestic violence, The Associated Press reported.
The Republican former presidential hopeful sent a letter Monday to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Players Association Executive Director DeMaurice Smith stating he believes players are showing disrespect for the flag and veterans.
Players should drop the “divisive political sideshow” and speak out against domestic violence instead, the governor wrote.
NFL league meetings Tuesday offer an opportunity to strongly condemn domestic violence, Walker added.
“My request is simple: stand for the American flag and the national anthem out of respect for those who risk their lives for our freedoms, and then take a stand against domestic violence to keep American families safe,” Walker wrote. “That’s something we can all agree on, and that just might help the NFL reunite with many of its devoted fans.”
Today, I urge the @NFL and its players to stand for the American flag and national anthem and to take a stand against domestic violence.
— Scott Walker (@ScottWalker) October 16, 2017