DAV takes Veterans Day message to Whitwell

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 12, 2003

A sea of little faces sat quietly Tuesday and listened to a man who knows the real story of Veterans Day.

Disabled American Veterans Chapter 51 Commander Stephen Saunders told students at Whitwell Elementary that Veterans Day is meant to honor those who paid the price the price of freedom so that all of us could enjoy those freedoms. Saunders said that while the idea of veterans may bring to mind the thought of war and destruction, the ultimate aim of the veteran is peace.

"It's not about blowing things up or shooting," Saunders told the children. "It's about doing what's right, helping others. It's about service."

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On Veterans Day, members of the Ironton area DAV joined the children in the Pledge of Allegiance and in singing The National Anthem. In the end, the kids offered a round of applause for their visitors and for all of the veterans who have served their country. Some of the those veterans are very familiar to the kids: they are family members and friends and neighbors.

"I have two cousins in the Army," 8-year-old Jodi Clay said. She knew Veterans Day was for her cousins and others like them. "It's for people who served in the army."

Principal Annette Massie said the yearly program is aimed at instilling that love of country and appreciation for those who serve their country in the armed services.