HAYDEN, ID (RNN) - Thousands of Americans have praised a picture of three Idaho elementary school students that shows the boys carefully folding the flag, with one lying underneath it to keep it from touching the ground.
Fifth graders Naylan Tuttle, Jack LeBreck and Casey Dolan were folding the flag after school Wednesday at Hayden Meadows Elementary when a parent snapped a picture, KHQ reports.
The parent, Amanda Reallan, says she was waiting to pick up her children when she saw the boys and their "amazing act of patriotism."
"They were having a hard time making sure it didn't touch the ground when the third boy laid under it to honor not letting it touch the ground," wrote Reallan on Facebook.
Since Reallan posted the photo, hoping to get it to go viral, it has been shared more than 15,000 times.
"I think it would be honorable for me. My dad and my grandfather, they've been in the service, in the military, so I think I would probably make them proud," Naylan told KHQ.
Naylan and Casey folded the flag, while Jack lay down on the ground, according to USA Today.
"This is our nation's flag, our school's flag. It's how we represent our country," Jack told KHQ. "If you let it touch the ground, it means you disrespect our country is what I heard."
School custodian and U.S. Air Force veteran Mac McCarty, who taught the boys how to properly fold and store the flag, says he's extremely proud of them.
"They did themselves proud; they did their families proud; they did our school proud and our community. I'm very proud of them, and I'm sure their families are very proud of them as well," McCarty told KHQ.
Reallan told USA Today she hopes to impart to her own children the kind of respect for country the boys showed by protecting the flag.