Veterans make ‘choices’ possible

By Buck Traxler, I-O Editor

Students at Prairie View School honored area Veterans on Monday, Veterans Day, with a special program.

The PVS gym filled up to almost standing room only capacity. Before the program, students and faculty members got those attending a cup of coffee and a cinnamon roll.

Elementary Principal Greg Jensen gave a short welcoming address and then the students led the opening of the program with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Led by music instructor Todd Truscott, the fifth grade choir sang the National Anthem, My Country Tis of Thee, and the Battle Hymn of the Republic.

Taking the stage next was special speaker Senior Airman Michelle Collins from Malmstrom AFB in Great Falls.

In her talk, Collins asked students seated in front of her if they had gone out for Halloween.

All of them gave a big yes, and she proceeded to ask what kind of costumes they had dressed up in. Not surprisingly, everyone one was different. Next, she asked if anyone had gone to church on Sunday. Some had, some didn’t. Collins noted that everyone had a choice to dress up and be different on Halloween, and to go or not to go to church.

“Some people in our world don’t have those choices,” she said.

She also asked the students to name a symbol of freedom. Some of the answers included our flag, the National Anthem and the Eagle.

Collins said those were all good choices, and noted that early statesman Ben Franklin had wanted the turkey as the country’s national bird. However, Congress voted for the Eagle.

In closing, Collins said, “The guys in the back paved the way for me to do my job and make them.”

Next, led by music teacher Janis McRae, the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade choir sang Thank a Vet and A Grateful Nation.

For the ending of the program, each military song was played and as the song began, veterans had been asked to stand for recognition when their military song was played.

Before the veterans left, each was given a special card.

Students put blue paint on the meat section of their hand, Then they painted the top half of their fingers red and bottom half of their fingers white, to represent the stripes of the flag.

They then pressed their (flag) hand on a card and signed it.

What a unique idea!

The program by the PVS students and staff is nothing short of amazing and if you are a veteran, you would be well advised to mark your calendar for 11-11-2014 and show up at PVS to see how they out do themselves.