The gymnasium was full November 12, 2018. Mayors, teachers, politicians, janitors, doctors, single-working moms and dads, black folks, white folks, democrats and republicans all filled the room. Second graders sat “criss-cross-applesauce” on the floor while their friends and family members filled the bleachers, along with other citizens who gleamed with pride for our great nation.
Everyone gathered together under one roof for the same cause: to honor the United States Veterans of Lewis County.
Second graders sang a medley of Patriotic songs as well as recited the poem written for the program it’s first year by founder, Cissy Riley.
Students of Veterans Day Programs passed were among those who contributed by singing the National Anthem and God Bless America. Rusty Isbell and Rob Inman, fathers of second-graders in this year’s program, sang “God Bless the USA.”
“Students in second grade are taught many valuable lessons while participating in this program,” said second grade teachers. “They are taught about our country, the meaning of freedom and the sacrifices soldiers have made and continue to make for our country. Respect and love for our nation is so very important for our students to develop. The price of freedom is high, and we cannot afford to forget those who are willing to pay it.”
Due to inclement weather, the parade was cancelled and the service was moved to the community building at Memorial Park.
The program began with the posting of colors by veterans of branches of service. Names of fallen comrades were read by Theresa Gifford, followed by the playing of “Taps”.
State Department Commander of the American Legion of Tennessee Steve Weisman gave a presentation about the importance of the American Legion and its functions.