And it's a tradition that Faistl wants to see remain strong in the community.
"What really gets me is when people ask 'When's Flag Day?' or 'What's Flag Day?' " Faistl said. "We grew up knowing that every June 14 is Flag Day. People are losing sight of it. It bothers me. It's a long tradition that we should want to continue."
Although he is a veteran of the Korean War, Faistl said that his participation in the parade goes far beyond being a veteran.
"Flag Day should be a day when we all show our patriotism and show our true colors," Faistl said. "If you turn on the TV these days, flags are everywhere, especially with [President Ronald] Reagan's funeral. It's a special time in this country and we should be able to honor the flag. The flag is the symbol of the entire country, a symbol of freedom."
The 64th Annual Flag Day Parade, combining the services of North Bergen, Guttenberg and West New York, will begin Monday night at 7 p.m. with the starting point at 85th Street and Bergenline Avenue in North Bergen and will continue down Bergenline Avenue south to 57th Street in West New York, where it will turn into Miller Stadium for the ceremonies and program that will begin around 8:30 p.m.
A total of 13 marching bands have committed to participate in the parade, which is believed to be the only one of its kind in northern New Jersey.
"I don't know of any other," Faistl said. "It's definitely a rarity."
Marching bands from North Bergen, Memorial, Emerson and Weehawken High Schools will participate in the parade, as well as the famed Leatherneck Pipe and Drum band, the Salaam Shriners String Band, the Palisade Park Fire Department Marching Band, the Bergen County Police Pipe Band, the Raiders Drum and Bugle Corps, and the Little Ferry VFW Band.
That's enough music and horns to stir up a lot of attention and certainly a lot of patriotism.
Several other veterans' groups, like local American Legions and Veterans of Foreign War organizations, will march as well. Local youth and recreation organizations will march, as well as several civic organizations.
There will be a parade of antique automobiles on display. Faistl said that he was especially excited that a 1942 Jeep has committed to participate in the event.
All three of the participating towns' leaders, namely West New York Mayor and State Assembly Speaker Albio Sires, North Bergen Mayor and State Senator Nicholas Sacco, and Guttenberg Mayor David Delle Donna will not only march, but play a part in the closing ceremonies inside Miller Stadium.
"The cooperation of the three towns has been tremendous," said Faistl, who coordinated the parade along with John "Digger" O'Dell, a superintendent in charge of recreation for the township of North Bergen. "Guttenberg and West New York have been willing to do anything for us and of course, North Bergen is in the forefront. It's a great chance for all to show their patriotism."
Once inside the stadium, several hundred torn and tattered American flags will be given their proper burial in a flag-burning ritual. It is not legal to simply throw away Old Glory.
"We retire the flags in the proper way," said Faistl, who has helped to collect the torn flags since last year's parade. "It's the only way to properly dispose of a flag and give it the honor it deserves. People have been dropping off flags to us [at North Bergen Recreation] and we're going to give them the proper sendoff."
Faistl said that the parade will be held rain or shine.
"As far as I'm concerned, it's a go," Faistl said. "It will be a nice parade. We want to be able to keep the tradition going."
Faistl said that if anyone has a torn or tattered flag that needs to receive proper retirement during the ceremonies, it can be brought to the North Bergen Department of Recreation headquarters at 6301 Meadowview Ave. during business hours.