Nearly 2,000 items were collected by SWHS students and donated to SWCTS! The spirit of the assembly was also conveyed through the performance of the SWHS Jazz Band and Choir.
Derek is a SWHS student who presented the following at the assembly:
“Veteran” A person who has served in the US Armed Forces or who is currently serving. A veteran is someone who, at one point in his or her life wrote a bank check….a blank check made payable to “The United States of America” for an amount of ‘up to and including…their life’. But what if they never served?
We gather today to honor the men and women who have worn this nation’s uniform. More importantly, we join together to thank them for their service and their devotion to duty. Whether they served in time of war or peace, America’s veterans all share a common bond – their unwavering belief in the cause of freedom, a belief so strong they were willing to give their lives for the sake of our freedom and way of life. But what if they never served?
We owe so much to our veterans, and it is a debt we can never truly repay. Their stories are the story of our history, because America rose to greatness on their shoulders. We owe them our very way of life, our freedom to live, work and raise our families as we please. The very least we can do is to honor their sacrifices, and thank them for all they’ve done for this great country. But what if they never served?
Veterans are this nation’s unsung heroes. Their families and friends may have been the only ones who knew their names, who knew the sacrifices they made to serve our country. In peacetime, especially, it was easy to forget that these men and women were on duty, in lonely outposts around the world. Our veterans have missed the births of their children, wedding anniversaries and graduations. They have spent holidays in soggy rice fields in Vietnam and amid the stinging sands of the Iraqi desert. Many of them gave up their chance to be husbands, wives, fathers and mothers. They gave up everything for their country…for us. But what if they never served?
Our veterans know only too well the dark side of humanity, whether it be the horrors of Nazi concentration camps and POW camps in Korea and Vietnam or the bloodshed witnessed recently in Iraq and Afghanistan, our soldiers remained…with strength and courage. But what if they never served?
Our veterans are living examples of what it means to be a hero. They have given us a lifetime of service, and the country has been enriched by their contributions both in and out of uniform. But what if they never served?
If they never served I can only imagine living in a country with no choices.
No choice of how to raise our children.
No choice of our careers.
No choice of who to marry.
No choice to select our leaders.
And no choice of how to live our lives.
But they DID serve. We are so thankful that they DID serve! We say, Thank you. Thank you for your sacrifices, for your sense of duty, and for your service. Our nation salutes you, and we gathered here today to salute you. Let’s stand up and give our guest active duty Veterans a huge round of applause.
Staff Sargent Prince-O’Neil
Staff Sargent Manibusan
Lieutenant Commander Tony Garner
Petty Officer Elf
Staff Sargent Rifenbury
Petty Officer Hartman
Army Veteran Raider Itgard
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