By NATASHA LAFAYETTE
The American Legion Honor Guard celebrated Veterans Day early with Jellico Elementary and Elk Valley School on Saturday morning.
Post 154 met with Jellico Elementary students at 9 a.m. and with Elk Valley at 12 a.m. The presentation was in honor of the nations veterans.
“We try to have something to honor the veterans,” said Elk Valley Principal Gilbert Lay. “It is very important for our country for the students to know why we have the freedoms we have.”
The presentation started with the National Anthem. The entire student body stood with their hands over their hearts while the veterans saluted the flag.
After the song rang its final tune, Veterans Resource officer Kevin Walden presented each of the men in the honor guard as they proudly carried a flag representing a branch of the military.
Every division of the military was honored during the service. After each flag had been marched across the gym floor at Elk Valley School, the final flag representing the soldiers missing in action was presented to a silent and respectful audience.
Walden asked the children to raise their hands if they had a family member in the military; over half of the students wagged their hands in the air as if they were excited to be a part of the military as well.
The final presentation was the folding of the flag. As each fold was made, Walden explained to the students the meaning of the fold. Life, Belief, remembrance, country and song were just some of the meaningful phrases Walden announced to the crowd.
“The flag means a lot to those who have served in the military, but it is a symbol for every American,” said Walden.
In closing Crystal Hatfield’s first grade class led the school in the Pledge of Allegiance.