Flags lowered Thursday to honor downstate soldier

LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder has ordered U.S. flags to be lowered to half-staff within the state Capitol Complex and at state buildings, grounds and facilities throughout Michigan in honor of Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 2nd Class David J. Warsen, of Kentwood, on Thursday, Aug. 30. Flags should be returned to full-staff on Friday, Aug. 31.

Warsen, 27, died Aug. 16 in a helicopter crash northeast of Kandahar, Afghanistan. He was assigned to a West Coast-based naval special warfare unit.

“Petty Officer Warsen will forever be remembered for his great sacrifice as a devoted Navy SEAL,” said Snyder. “I extend my sincere condolences to his many friends, fiancée, Karlyn, and entire family.”

Warsen was a graduate of East Kentwood High School. He joined the Navy in March 2009, and his tour in Afghanistan was set to end Oct. 1. Warsen and his fiancée were planning a Dec. 8 wedding.

Visitation will be from 1 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday at Mars Hill Bible Church in Grandville. The funeral service will be 11 a.m. on Thursday at the church.

This flag order is in accordance with Executive Order 2006-10, III.B.3. Michigan residents, businesses, schools, local governments and other organizations also are encouraged to display the flag at half-staff.

When flown at half-staff or half-mast, the U.S. flag should be hoisted first to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff or half-mast position. The flag should again be raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day.