Morrow County School District schools honored veterans in several ways for Veterans Day last week.
On November 9, the staff and students of Heppner Jr/Sr High School honored veterans with a special program and lunch. The day started with veterans visiting classrooms to share their stories with staff and students who were eager to hear the first-hand experiences of men and women in uniform.
After classroom visits, all staff and students gathered with the guests in the gym where each veteran was given a gift. A program followed, featuring the HJSHS band and choir performing “Armed Forces on Parade” and “Already Home”. A video presentation followed with pictures of the veterans during their time in the military. Former HJSHS math teacher David Melville was the honored guest speaker. Captain Melville (Ret.) spoke about the sacrifices that veterans and their families have made, and he urged students to continue to support the veterans. Each veteran in attendance was then recognized in a roll call that included their name, rank, branch of service and dates of enlistment. This was followed by a moment of silence and “Taps” to recognize veterans who have passed away. After the program, a lunch was served by HJSHS students to the veterans and their families.
Irrigon Jr/Sr High School hosted its annual Veterans Day Assembly in the gym with all of 9th-12th grade students in attendance. The school invited all local veterans to attend and be honored during the assembly and for refreshments afterward. Local Boy Scout Troop #602 color guard presented the colors and the Irrigon High Pep Band played the national anthem to kick off the event. Irrigon Jr/Sr High School teacher Mr. Johnson, currently serving in the National Guard, spoke about his service and why he chooses to continue serving. Irrigon students who have already enlisted or plan on enlisting in the military were asked to stand and be recognized. This was followed by student presentations in honor of Veterans Day, including songs, poems and essays. Clara Sexton-Funk performed a song, Jocelyn Dyer presented her own essay, while Liz Perez, Liz Nunez and Alex Walls all presented pieces that were written by other students from Irrigon Jr/Sr High School.
At A.C. Houghton Elementary, the Lions Club visited and gave a presentation to all 1st grade students about Veterans Day. At the conclusion of the presentation, each student received their own U.S. flags.
Sam Boardman Elementary’s annual Veterans Day Concert occurred on November 9th . The school’s brand new music teacher, Heather Noble, did a wonderful job preparing students to perform patriotic songs in tribute to all veterans who have served and continue to serve for our country. The guest speaker was Andrew Kimmell, a former sergeant in the U.S. Army. Second and third grade students presented the history of Veterans Day, the Pledge of Allegiance and “thank you” cards to our veterans. School staff would like to give a special thanks to the Boardman Police Explorers who provided the color guard. The Veterans Day Assembly is a wonderful occasion for students and staff to express our gratitude for those who have made such enormous sacrifices, and we are glad for the opportunity each year.