18-year-old handcrafts wooden American flags for first responders

ByMatteo Iadonisi
Friday, August 21, 2020
18-year-old handcrafts wooden American flags for first responders
"We can't just stand on the bad. We've got to help the good and just give back the best we can." Matt Menditto looked to his firefighter father and decided it was time to give back

NORTHAMPTON TWP, Pa. -- Matt Menditto is an 18-year-old CEO using his handcrafting skills to support first responders in his community.

He typically sells his beautiful wooden American flags, but has decided to donate some to police departments around Bucks County.

All his life, he has been inspired by his father, Mike Menditto, a volunteer firefighter in Northampton Township.

"Some people that just don't have them in their family don't realize how much they do for us on a day-to-day basis," Matt said about first responders.

So, the decision to donate his time and talents came naturally.

Matt started crafting in 2019, creating a business called, "Summit Flags." He was producing roughly 20 per day until the COVID-19 pandemic ensued and his sales fell flat.

The virus also sent Matt home for the remainder of his senior year at Council Rock High School South. These unfortunate circumstances gave the 2020 graduate more time to produce his masterpieces.

His designs iterate upon the classic American flag to represent many first responder communities. Blue represents the police, red is for firemen, green is for border patrol, white is for Emergency Medical Services, and black represents the military's camouflaged flags.

As protests and riots rose across the country earlier this year, Matt felt he needed to show local law enforcement they were still supported.

"There's bad everything. There's bad cops, there's bad teachers. But we do need to show the support to the good ones," Matt said. "We can't just stand on the bad. We've got to help the good and just give back the best we can."

The Northampton Police Department was grateful for Matt's generous donation.

"We all appreciate the time and energy he put into making the flags," said Chief Steven LeCompte. He was particularly touched by the thin blue line Matt designed as part of the wooden craft.

"For police, the thin blue line means maintaining order over disorder," Chief LeCompte said.

He hopes Matt's message will continue to reinforce the mission of Northampton's police force, gaining even greater public confidence and support.

"We're here to support the community," Chief LeCompte said. "Our number one priority is maintaining safety in our community."

Lieutenant Charles Pinkerton agreed.

"The officers show up for work every day ready to take on any responsibilities that they may be called upon," he said.

For such selfless valor, Matt Menditto and his father, Mike, thought they should be recognized.

"I've always tried to help others any way I can," said Mike, who is off-duty from the fire department, recovering from a knee surgery. "Maybe, you know, that's rubbed off a little."

Now, his son hopes to continue donating flags to firemen, police, and other first responders across the Greater Philadelphia Area and potentially the entire country.

To learn more about Matt 's mission and Summit Flags, visit his website.

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