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Air Force veteran fights to keep home after getting fined for flying American Flag

Larry Murphree spent 12 years in a legal battle over his decision to fly the American Flag in his Florida neighborhood.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. — We've followed the 12-year legal battle between Larry Murphree and his former homeowner's association over his decision to fly the American Flag.

Today, on Flag Day, we caught up with him as he is continuing his fight to keep his home, which he says he may have to sell to settle his legal expenses.

"I would do it again for the flag, what it stands for," Murphree told First Coast News. 

It's a decision he doesn't regret, as he began flying the flag at his then home in the Sweetwater Community of Jacksonville.

"It's not just a piece of cloth with different colors on it. It stands for the greatest country in the world," he said. 

That decision would cost him 12 years of court hearings and thousands of dollars. He was told then he couldn't fly the flag because it was against the rules of his HOA.

"There was no flags in the whole neighborhood and then when I put that one in, they said it was an unauthorized object," he explained.

Late last year, he was awarded $1.223.  He calls it a small victory considering Murphree says he owes $200,000 in attorney fees.

He sold his home and moved out of the neighborhood, breaking even on the sale. He's now living in St. Johns County, but he says he may have to sell again because of those legal expenses.

"It absolutely has nothing to do with wanting to move. It's down to, we'll have to," he said.

A GoFundMe page was started to help with those expenses.  Murphree says his retirement is dried up.

He believes despite the financial loses he's incurred, he's gained so much more: a respect for the flag he fought to fly, both in court, and as an Air Force veteran. 

"I saw a casket come off a plane with a flag over it. Well, they gave it all for what the flag stands for," Murphree said. 

RELATED: Veteran forced to sell home after hefty fines for flying American flag, now headed for trial

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