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Veterans Day celebration gives students chance to honor heroes

Sunday is Veterans Day. To honor our veterans, the Rexburg Area Chamber of Commerce held its annual Veterans Day Memorial Ceremony at Madison High School. It gives the high school students a chance to learn more about the history of those who fought to defend America.

“We can communicate with the students in a way that shows them how important this is and a way for the community to see from the student perspective how valuable the students really find this,” said Ryan Snelgrove, an English teacher at Madison High.

The Chamber of Commerce and the high school have partnered for the past two years to bring the Veterans Day Memorial ceremony to the campus.

“The band would go elsewhere. There wasn’t a chance to bring our students involved in this,” Snelgrove said. “It is a requirement and an important requirement in the high schools.”

This celebration has become one of the students’ favorite assemblies of the year.

“We really are fortunate enough to have so many veterans to get to know them and help educate our school about Veterans Day and what it is,” said Ellie Wolf, a sophomore.

“They’ve been so influential in the lives of our community by going out and serving in our nation,” said Joseph Sanns, a senior. “I think it’s something that we must do because of what they’ve done for us.”

The ceremony recognizes those who served by playing the service hymn from each branch of the military.

“I really liked when the veterans stood for their own songs. It made me realize that they risk their lives for us,” said Logan Ballard. “It’s something we don’t think about.”

The assembly even brought out veterans to speak to students about why it’s important to honor our heroes.

“This is an opportunity to share that little glimpse into what happened 100 years ago- the war to end all wars,” said Lt. Col. Robert Jones. “Share that with them and hopefully they’ll gain an appreciation of what’s happened. Also, the sacrifices and services given by all of our American patriots and our military over the years to keep America free.”

Once the ceremony is over, many students share a common takeaway.

“It shows a lot of respect,” said Sarah Gentile, a senior.

“Students now don’t really know exactly what happened going on with the wars and we need to respect men and women who served them,” said Matthew Snelgrove, a junior.

“On top of the respect, I think it’s really educational to talk to someone that’s done something that we have never done and maybe won’t ever do,” said John Zenger, a senior.

The high school hopes to continue being part of the Rexburg Area Chamber of Commerce’s Veterans Day Memorial Ceremony for years to come.

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