Olin

Olin students got a different perspective on what it means to be a veteran during their Veterans Day assembly, delayed until Nov. 12 as early snow canceled school on the holiday.

Guest speaker, Becky DirksHaugsted, gave students an interactive talk and challenged what a veteran could look like.

“A lot of times, we don’t know what veterans look like,” she said.

While some veterans, like the color guard that helped bring in the flag, were easily identifiable by their uniforms, in other cases it could be much harder to figure out who a veteran was. Though the average veteran was between 50 and 70, they could be much younger or older than that. In fact, two million of the country’s 18 million veterans were under 20 years of age.

“Veterans can be just about any age, and they can do just about anything,” DirksHaugsted said.

When recognizing a female veteran, a shout of “Wait, that’s my grandma!” came from the crowd of students, to the amusements of the rest of those at the elementary.

Wyatt Powelson read out his essay on what the flag means to him, being awarded first place for the local American Legion post’s what the flag means to me essay contest. Powelson’s essay went through his family members that have served in the military, including some that were killed in action.

His essay covered conflicts like the Vietnam War and the War on Terror.

The other winners were Kennedy Thompson and Savanna Gutweiler, who took second and third respectively.

The assembly also featured a musical performance of “A Grateful Nation,” led by the fourth and fifth graders, a flag-folding demonstration and a video presentation of students thanking veterans.

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