photos by TANIAH TUDOR
Van Buren Superintendent Merle Dickerson greets (from left) Richard Jimenez, an Air Force veteran of the Korean War, Tom Gamble, a Navy veteran, and Don Sellers, a Navy veteran of the Korean War, before the Van Buren High School’s Veteran’s Day ceremony on Monday. The ceremony was held to recognize and honor area veterans for their years of military service.
Aspen Knight, a senior at Van Buren High School, sings the National Anthem while members of the Junior ROTC Color Guard display the American and VBHS flags.
Van Buren High School students and staff held a ceremony Monday morning to honor and recognize area veterans for their service.
About 20 veterans came to the event, including one World War II veteran and one female veteran of the Gulf War.
Cadet Enoc Henriquez with the Van Buren Junior ROTC was the presenter during the ceremony, and asked veterans from each war to stand up and be recognized before having them all stand together.
“I just want to thank you all for coming here….and being recognized…and for all the students coming and respecting our veterans,” Henriquez said.
Van Buren’s high school band played several patriotic pieces, including “God Bless America” and the national anthem, “The Star Spangled Banner.” The VBHS choir also performed during the ceremony.
Senior Aspen Knight also sang a classic version of the “The Star Spangled Banner” while members of the Junior ROTC color guard displayed the American Flag and the VBHS flag.
Cooper Snowden and Bailey Gossett, students in Heather Dean’s U.S. history class, read their winning essays from a school contest.
Snowden spoke on what it means to be an American, while Gossett’s topic was the involvement of women in the military.
Major Mike Akins, senior army instructor with the Junior ROTC, also thanked veterans before the ceremony ended with a moment of silence for fallen soldiers. The band then played “Taps” while veterans saluted the American Flag.
Veterans and their attending families were ushered out after the ceremony for refreshments.