Veteran's Day at St. Mary's School is more than a history lesson. It's a chance for the school to say, "Thank You" to the brave men and women who defend our country's freedoms.
Each year we honor members of the greatest generation, those who fought in World War II. There were 11 in attendance. One of the soldiers, Donald Beeghly, landed on Omaha Beach and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. Another, Mary Bezy, a Nurse with the Army Air Corps, recently celebrated her 90th birthday. Each WWII hero received a standing ovation and a patriotic, blessed, red, white and blue rosary. Each year we also honor vets from a specific war, this year it was 16 veterans from Afghanistan and Iraq. Two students read their poems about the veterans. One of them wrote about her dad being in Iraq, being injured and coming home. Her poem was submitted and published this year in the Anthology of Poetry for Young Americans, the other students' poem has been submitted for possible publication. At the assembly there were poems, prayers, each of the 68 veterans names were read, each branch of service's flag was shown and songs were sung. The children sang a Thank you veteran song and held up a big thank you message they'd created. The Guest speaker, a St. Mary's alumni, Staff Sergeant Paul Brown III, a fireman with the USAF who's been to Afghanistan, told the students to follow their dreams. He said he did, he's a fireman and in the service. The Bellevue East High School ROTC color guard (2 are St. Mary's alumni) and drill team performed with their rifles and a bugler played taps. It was a moving tribute for the service members and all of those in attendance. To see more photos from Veteran's Day go to our photo gallery under the School Life heading and click on Assemblies.