Patriotic squirrels steal family's American flags

Two squirrels were recorded stealing American flags from a San Antonio family's front yard. (Courtesy Devin Rivera-Duque)

SAN ANTONIO (WOAI) - This week, a local Air Force veteran was heartbroken to discover all the American flags in his front yard had been stolen.

But the man's frustration actually turned into laughter after a neighbor showed him video of the thieves in action.

Jennifer Northam showed us what's left of her father's flag memorial - nothing but sticks, the flags forcibly torn off.

"It wasn't like they had just fallen off," Northam said. "Both of us were kind of heartbroken. We were just confused because we're new to the neighborhood. We didn't know if somebody did it or what happened."

Little did they know, their neighbor Devin Rivera-Duque witnessed the whole thing.

"I saw her with the first flag," Rivera-Duque said. "I was just freaked out. The second and third flag, I just started recording her."

The "her" she's talking about is a squirrel. A pair of squirrels, actually. In her video, you see them struggle to get the flag off the stick. But they're patient squirrels, determined; they don't give up. Eventually, they rip the flags free, roll the flags into a ball, put them in their mouth, and run off.

"I was just like, 'Oh my God,'" said Rivera-Duque. “These animals have a mind of their own. Like, you never would guess that they would do something like that."

"How crazy that it was actually a squirrel that took it,” added Northam, “and they made a nest out of them."

Rivera-Duque showed us the nest high up in a tree - 10 small American flags bringing comfort and shelter to a family of resourceful squirrels.

"It was like relief came over both of us,” said Northam, “because we finally understood that it wasn't someone. It was something. I mean, how amazing that they use their resources like that. They find something new, figured it would work and used it."

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