The assembly started when the Veterans Guard of Bella Vista Posted the Colors.
Student Council President Morgan Hasler led the Pledge of Allegiance which was followed by a flawless playing of The Star Spangled Banner by the WJHS Band.
Principal Sparacino's remarks grew from the last line of the National Anthem, "O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave!"
In the picture above, you can see that the veterans in attendance where asked to rise during a portion of Mr. Sparacino's speech.
Mr. Sparacino said, "Since the early days of our founding fathers, America has never lacked for individuals who are willing to step forward to pay the price of freedom with their service, their devotion, and when necessary, their lives.
THESE are the veterans. These are the BRAVE- the men and women who were willing to leave the comfort of their home, to forfeit their safety, and place themselves on the front lines of the battlefield.
These are the veterans, these are the BRAVE- the men and women willing to serve so that liberty will not only continue, but flourish in new places across the globe.
These are the veterans. These are the BRAVE. To paraphrase President John F. Kennedy, these are the men and women that asked not what their country could do for them, but asked what they could do for their country.
These are the veterans. These are the BRAVE. These are the men and women who, when their nation called, answered enthusiastically, “I’ll go.” They served to defend liberty; a liberty that we now cherish; a liberty they helped expand to us, our children, and God willing, for generations to come.
These are the veterans. These are the BRAVE. These are the men and women that we gather to honor on this special day.
Ladies and gentlemen, as they have honored us with their service, their sacrifice, let us honor them now with our thoughts, our prayers, and certainly, our applause. Thank you veterans!"
The next portion of the assembly showcased the talents of several of our students.
Bailey Tadda and Laura Jones recited two poems: "The Noble and the Brave" and "The Best on Earth."
The 8th Grade Orchestra then performed a medley of patriotic songs.
Anna Disney and Emily Chase honored the veterans with their compilation of patriotic quotes.
Our Cantanti Select Choir beautifully sang "Song for the Unsung Hero."
Simon Mooney rose to recite "The American Hero."
An essay contest preceded the assembly and two winners were chosen to have their work highlighted during the ceremony. Robby Burchit read his original essay titled "Patriotism."
Hannah Pointer chose to have one of WJHS's very own veterans, Mrs. Pollreis read her winning essay, "What does patriotism mean to me?"
A moment of silence to honor those that paid the ultimate sacrifice was followed by Echo Taps performed brilliantly by Patrick Bell and Henry Timpe.
The ceremony concluded with another rousing standing ovation for the veterans in attendance. Then the student body flooded the court to personally thank the veterans for their service and to take pictures with them.
It was a great ceremony and wonderful to see not only the talent of our students on display, but their love and appreciation for our veterans.
Patriotism lives at WJHS!