West District students offered their gratitude to veterans through music Friday morning at a special Veterans Day assembly.
Some students sang patriotic songs, others read the poem, “The Flag We Love” and those in the orchestra played “America the Beautiful.”
In turn, the teachers leading them, strings teacher Maryann Mattie and Principal Sharon Lowery, helped them to understand the significance of Veterans Day and how to observe it.
“On this special day we remember all the men and women who served our country to make it free and a great place to live,” Miss Mattie began, opening the assembly. She explained how she had listened to her grandfather tell stories of his time in the service and how important it was to him.
“Boys and girls when you sing these songs you show respect to the people who served,” she said.
Lowery spoke to the children, explaining two words: protect and sacrifice.
“Think about a time when maybe you were at the beach or a playground and you saw a small child and nearby there was a watchful parent making sure the child was safe, maybe looking to see if there was anything nearby that could hurt the child,” Lowery began, explaining that those men and women in the U.S. Armed Forces are grownups who protect our country in the same way every day.
“They do lots of different jobs and go places, some places that are not so nice,” she continued.
“Sacrifice means you can’t have something you really want or doing something you don’t want to because you believe it’s the right thing to do… sometimes they can’t be with their family and have to go away for a long time,” she said.
Lowery asked those in the audience who had served to stand up, then, recognizing that their families also sacrifice, she asked students and others whose family members had served to also stand.
She presented a bouquet, bought with money donated by West District students, to Lt. Alan Daninhirsch to be placed at the Veterans Memorial at Town Hall this morning at 11 a.m.
"Veterans appreciate your thoughts about them. If you know a veteran or someone serving in the military or you see someone in the street, just go up and say thank you - that means more than any parade," he said. "They are here to serve you and they do it every single day."