Above: Senior class president Taylin Gosch recites the pledge of Allegiance while keynote speaker Andy Queen salutes the flag.
Sixth grader Kayla Hoffmann’s definition of a veteran was straight to the point.
“Being a veteran means you are willing to sacrifice yourself for others. They leave their homes and loved ones to fight for us.”
Hoffmann was one of three elementary students who were chosen to read their Veterans Day essays at Cleveland’s Veterans Day program, which was held in the new gym on Wednesday morning.
But once back in civilian clothes, Hoffmann went on to say, there is no set pattern for a veteran.
“A veteran can be many things, like a shopkeeper, or a mother or father or a dog walker, for goodness sake. But even though the war may be over, they are still a veteran at heart, so if you see a veteran or soldier today, please thank them for their service.”
Chosen from among the third and fourth graders to read her essay, Hadley Thompson, a fourth grader, had a similar definition. She evoked her great grandfather, who served as a soldier in the Army.
“He risked his life, like many people…we can’t thank them enough for what they’ve done. Love them like you would sacrifice your lives for them because they did for us.”
For Barett Vogel, a first grader, being a veteran came down to courage.
“These brave heroes went into a dangerous war for all of us.”
In his keynote address, Cleveland American Legion member and CHS graduate Andy Queen read President Ronald Regan’s 1985 Veterans Day speech.
“Each time I read this speech, I feel these words are just as significant today as they were then,” Queen said.
After his speech, Queen presented band director Erik Hermanson a $5000 check from the Cleveland American Legion to go to the band's spring trip to Florida.
Also during the program, teacher Dave Cink gave the introduction. Senior class president Taylin Gosch led the Pledge of Allegiance. Junior class president Amelia Tauer welcomed the crowd. Student Council President Sarena Remiger read President Jo Biden’s Veterans Day proclamation. Student Council Vice President Kyra McCarthy gave the closing remarks.
Members of the Cleveland American Legion, Legion Auxiliary and the Sons of the American Legion posted the colors. Firing a three-round salute, with directions by Queen, were Legion members Steve Biehn, Dave Voss, Kevin Derner, Leonard Seitz and Bob Hahn.
Directed by Hermanson, the 9-12th-Grade Concert Band provided music for the event, including the Star Spangled Banner and Armed Forces on Parade (Anchors Aweigh, The Caisson Song, The Marines' Hymn and The U.S. Air Force Song).
Senior Morgan Mueller and junior Jersie Kelley played the traditional taps.
Elementary students Barrett Vogel, Kayla Hoffmann and Hadley Thompson read their selected essays on what Veterans Day means to them. Here they pose with Cleveland American Legion member and keynote speaker Andy Queen.
Karin Miller’s kindergarteners wore hats that recognized the five major service organizations: Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard.
Becky Michels and Jim Beckel were among the members of the Color Guard.
Another view of the Color Guard
Members of the firing squad Steve Biehn, Dave Voss, Kevin Derner, Leonard Seitz and Bob Hahn salute the flag during the Pledge of Allegiance.
The 9-12th Grade Concert band was out in full force.
Morgan Mueller and Jersie Kelley played taps.
Junior class president Amelia Tauer welcomed the crowd.
Student Council President Sarena Remiger read President Jo Biden’s Veteran’s Day proclamation.
The ceremony was a good opportunity for Andy Queen to present band director Erik Hermanson with a $5000 donation from the Legion Club to go toward the band’s planned spring trip to Florida.