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While Nov. 11 was the calendar date for Veterans Day, it was observed all week in local school systems.
Area schools celebrated Veterans Day in a variety of ways throughout the week, from hearing presentations to writing letters and making videos.
Many of the schools organized some sort of presentation or assembly for students, including G.C. Burkhead and Creekside elementary schools. Some schools discussed the holiday in classes, such as Elizabethtown High School. Others had meals with veterans and active-duty military, including West Hardin Middle School and New Highland Elementary School.
Some local schools invited members of the military to speak to students. This is how Heartland Elementary School celebrated the holiday Tuesday.
Col. Carolyn Jolitz, deputy commander for nursing services at Ireland Army and Community Hospital at Fort Knox, spoke to Heartland students about the holiday.
Jolitz encouraged them to thank veterans for their service and for giving them the freedoms they enjoy.
“Thank you for doing all these wonderful things,” she offered as an example to the elementary students.
Jolitz said presentations such as these are important for children because they develops patriotism early.
“Sometimes words cannot express how I feel,” she said about her feelings about seeing students perform patriotic songs and read poems about Veterans Day.
Each grade participated in some way in the event, which was important to Principal Emily Campbell. This is the second year the school has held a Veterans Day assembly. The school has a large number of military families among students and staff, so Campbell felt it was important to honor the day and ensure it was taught in classrooms as well.
Meadow View Elementary School participated in a unique statewide celebration by following Gov. Steve Beshear’s suggestion to plant a tree in honor of the holiday. Meadow View students planted a small evergreen tree Friday morning and decorated it throughout the day.
The decorations included paper chains with student messages and names of veterans the students knew, teacher Amy Schablik said.
Evalyne Raisor and Kyle Bussiere, fourth-graders at Meadow View, participated in the morning ceremony that accompanied the planting of the tree.
Raisor said it was important to remember Veterans Day because of the way military members have helped the country.
“Some of them died for our country,” she said.
Bussiere agreed that the assistance that veterans provided should be honored.
“We wouldn’t be here where we are today,” he said.
Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747.