A friendship forged through a love of flags

Before Lane Elsberry steps inside Randolph Elementary School to start his day, the first-grader makes an important stop on the route from his parents’ car to the front door. He stops to help Stan Minchow, the school’s assistant custodial supervisor, raise the American and Nebraska flags outside the school’s 37th Street entrance.

“His grandfather is a veteran so flags mean a lot to this family,” said Lane’s mother, Lisa Elsberry.

Lane’s love of flags runs so deep that Lisa approached Minchow earlier this school year and asked if he’d mind a helper for the morning ritual. Ever since, Lane is there - every morning - waiting for Stan so he can help raise the flags.

“Sometimes if I’m busy I’ll leave the flags inside the front door so he can grab them and wait for me by the flagpoles,” Minchow said.

The bond with Minchow is just one example of the progress Lane has made since he started at Randolph last year as a kindergartner. Another example - fitting considering his love of flags - is that Lane can now recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

“You would be amazed at the growth he has shown in one year and the communication he’s learned in one year,” said Randolph Principal Monica Jochum.

And once the flags are raised, Stan and Lane exchange a fist bump.

“Stan is his buddy,” Lisa said.

Published: November 14, 2018, Updated: November 20, 2018

"Stan is his buddy."

Lisa Elsberry, mother of Randolph first-grader Lane Elsberry