Kurn Hattin Homes for Children held its annual Veterans Day Observance and luncheon on November 10. The program included the Presentation of Colors; A Call to Colors; Moment of Silence; Taps; Pledge of Allegiance; Star Spangled Banner; Welcome from Executive Director, Stephen Harrison; Introductory remarks from Social Studies/Civics teacher, Deborah Velto; candle lighting to the reading of In Flanders Field; Kurn Hattin Concert Band selections; and Retirement of Colors and Retreat.
The program also included a number of students reading excerpts from essays that will be entered in the VFW’s annual Patriot’s Pen contest. This year’s essay theme is How Are You Inspired America?
One student who was chosen to read an excerpt of her essay said:
I have a few reasons why I am inspired by America that I would like to share with you.
My first reason is that people of color have the same rights as any white man or white woman. It wasn’t always that way. Black people had to fight for their freedom and fight for their rights. Finally in the 1960s, during the Civil Rights Movement, minorities got their freedom. Part of the reason many people come to America is because there is freedom here.
At the luncheon following the program, retired U.S. Marine Bob McNamara, said that those words really resonated with him. Bob, who served in Vietnam in 1968 and received three Purple Hearts, reflected on his return to the States. He said, “The Vets weren’t always treated well, especially the African-American Vets. I appreciated Emmery’s essay because it goes right to the heart of the matter. Freedom.”
Thank you to everyone who made this event memorable for all who participated, including Lisa Bianconi, Music Director; Jen Leonard, Steve Miceli, and Ben Weiner, music helpers; KHH Maintenance and IT Departments; and all the Kurn Hattin children and staff for making this a day to remember for those who served in the United States armed forces. If you are a Veteran from the Westminster, Vermont area and would like to attend next year’s event, please contact Heather at (802) 721-6916 or firstname.lastname@example.org.