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The Daily Ardmoreite
  • Area schools celebrate Veterans Day

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  • Since school is still in session for Veterans Day, educators use the holiday as an opportunity for a hands-on lesson in patriotism.
    "The efforts of not only the students, but the faculty are appreciated," said Patti Green, Major, Oklahoma Army National Guard (Ret.) and Charles Evans teacher. "This is one of the better classroom experiences students can have."
    Green attended the Ardmore Middle School Veterans Recognition Assembly Friday.
    "It was very patriotic to our troops," said sixth-grader Logan Thompson. "I was honored we had the ability to have the veterans here today. We have a great country."
    It was the first such a event the school has had in a while, and was attended by over 50 local veterans.
    "It was a huge success," said Derek Crawford, eighth-grade social studies teacher and coach. :We wanted to give the students a chance to thank the veterans in our community."
    The program included patriotic songs from the choir, orchestra and band.
    "At the end they played 'Taps,' and I was thinking of people who didn't come home. The names of several friends came to mind, and that was very touching," said Marine Capt. Brian Carter.
    As the choir sang "The Army Goes Rolling Along," "Marine's Hymn," "The U.S. Air Force Song," "Anchors Away" and "Semper Paratus," veterans present from that branch of the military stood for recognition.
    "I liked the singing and standing up for their song. We got to see how glad people are for their song and their country," said sixth-grader Ian Bell.
    Master Sgt. Kent Tucker spoke on behalf of the veterans and discussed how to fold the American flag and what the folding represents.
    "There are so many things I can tell you about the flag, but the main thing is to keep it flying high," he said.
    Students appreciated the first-hand knowledge from people who risked their lives for the flag.
    "My favorite part was when the veteran talked about the flag. It was like social studies class, and I love history," said sixth-grader Allison Kirina. "I've never folded a flag, but I want to learn because I want to know how they make it into that triangle."
    Students also look forward to the opportunity to hear from more of the veterans.
    "I liked all those veterans who have sacrificed and lived through all those wars, especially the World War II guy," said sixth-grader Jose Villagomez. "He could still stand up and stay strong. I really want to see the veterans again and meet the one from World War II."
    Other districts will have events on Monday, including Dickson Public Schools.
    Page 2 of 2 - The entire district will gather at 9 a.m. in the gymnasium for the annual Veterans Day program. The band and choir will perform, and student council members will lead the program.
    Maj. Arlen Fowler will be the speaker. His military service includes a tour of duty with the Navy from 1946 to 1948, in the infantry in the Korean War and as a chaplain in the Berlin Crisis in 1961.
    A university professor with a doctorate, Fowler retired and served as a rector for St. Philip's Episcopal Church, a postion he retired from in 1995.
    "What an honor it is to have him here to speak," said Dickson High School Principal Rex Trent. "He has done so much for our country."
    In his second year at Dickson, Trent is happy to work at a school that focuses on honoring veterans.
    "It's important to honor veterans, not only in America, but right here in our community," he said. "We honor what they have done in the past and what continues to allow us to come to work."
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