Three Oakland, Maine,-based roofers stopped work, stood and put their hands on their hearts when the national anthem played at a Waterville High School football game near their job site, Portland ABC affiliate WMTW reported.

Little did they know, someone snapped a picture, and now it’s being passed around the internet, far and wide. Fox News was among the media outlets to share the photograph on social media.

“They had no idea anyone even noticed but our community did,” local woman Shanon Gurski Dixon told WMTW. “Several people had taken pictures of this patriotic act of kindness. Our little city would love to have them recognized.”

Michelle Lyons Cossar, of Old Town, took the photo that has now been shared more than 600 times and counting. She told Fox News she was standing for the anthem herself at the game, “when I looked over the fence, I saw them standing and respecting the flag.”

She told the cable television news station she took the picture because “I just thought the world could use a little more of that right now.”

Cossar identified the three men to Fox News, but the station reported that none of the men had immediately responded to requests for comment.

Conduct during the national anthem has become a hot-button issue around the country as National Football League players have been kneeling during the song to protest racial injustice in America. President Donald Trump has been among those outspoken about the protests, calling them an insult to the flag and military veterans.

Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.