BA program honors vets

Published 7:00 pm Wednesday, November 10, 2010

From the “halls of Montezuma” to the floors of BrookhavenAcademy’s gymnasium, service men and women were honored atBrookhaven Academy’s 10th Annual Veterans Day Program Tuesday.

BA National Honor Society and Student Council members, inconjunction with the rest of the school, invited the community andarea veterans for the special ceremony.

“It’s a good way to have the students honor the veterans and beinvolved,” said Deanna Culbertson, honor society sponsor. “It kindof gives you a lump in your throat when the veterans stand up.”

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The event may have only been one day, but BA students had beenworking on the program for two weeks in their art, history andmusic classes.

“It’s a special honor at Brookhaven Academy to show the veteransthat we appreciate them,” said Mark Rushing, honor societypresident. “It makes me feel proud to be an American everyday.”

Enterprise Attendance Center’s Student Council, in conjunctionwith the FFA, also hosted a veterans recognition program Tuesdaymorning at the county school.

Visitors to BA’s program were met with a wave of patriotism asstudents’ renditions of patriotic symbols and essays lined thewalls of the gymnasium.

American pride also filled the air, as first- throughsixth-graders sang a melody that included “America” and “Americathe Beautiful.” Fourth- through sixth-graders also gave specialrecognition to each branch of the military by singing individualbranch hymns.

The event also included two guest speakers.

State Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith was in attendance and spoke to theaudience about the importance of Veterans Day and the need toremember veterans and military personnel every day.

“Really, I am a nobody standing in front of a lot ofsomebodies,” said the senator. “Freedom sure didn’t come free.”

Keynote speaker, veteran and Marine recruiter Staff Sgt. FrankSilvestro shared his reasons for entering the armed forces, thankedthe veterans for their service and stressed the importance ofmilitary duty with the audience.

“When your country needed you, you got the job done,” Silvestrosaid to the veterans in attendance. “Passing on the legacy is whatit’s all about.”

The event was topped off by an invitation from the honor societyand student council to veterans to enjoy refreshments incelebration of their active service in the military.

Veterans appreciated the students’ efforts and took notice ofBA’s warm acceptance of their presence.

“I feel honored to be out here today,” said Air Force veteranCecil Rhodes. “It makes me want to cry sometimes – to go throughwhat we’ve been through and to get honored on a day liketoday.”