Welti Elementary honors veterans with special program


A Welti Elementary student speaks in part of Tuesday night’s Veterans Day program at the school. / Nick Griffin

WELTI – Welti Elementary School held its annual Veterans Day program Tuesday night and the gym was packed with veterans and their families. This year’s ceremony changed things up a little bit. The second-grade class put on the program and sang in the choir instead of the older students, and the program was held at night instead of during the school day. Holly Pond High School’s band was also part of the program and provided several pieces of music to honor the veterans in attendance.

Welti Elementary Principal Gina Webb said she thinks the changes made for a very successful ceremony.

“We always do a program to honor veterans and this year a different grade decided they wanted to do it. Normally it’s the older kids and so this year the second-graders chose to do the Veterans Day program. So that’s kind of neat because that means that learning about veterans and the importance of Veterans Day and honoring our country’s heroes was important to an even younger age group,” Webb said. “We’ve never done the program at night; we’ve always done it during the day, so I thought it would be easier for parents to attend at night. They don’t have to take off work, so it seems like there were more in attendance for the program than there have been in the past. I wish we could’ve had a few more veterans here to honor, but we were very excited with the veterans and active military that were able to come.”

Webb was also happy to see Holly Pond High School involved with the ceremony this year to give her younger students an idea of what to look forward to.

“The majority of our students end up going to Holly Pond or Hanceville when they leave,” shared Webb, “that’s our feeder pattern. We always try to incorporate one of the high schools into some of our programs, so I think that was also very beneficial to our students to have awareness of something they can do when they get to high school and it gives the community a chance to come together and be a part of a great program.”

Two of the highlights of Tuesday night’s event were the performance of the Missing Man Table and Honors Ceremony, and United States Army veteran, and grandfather of one of the second-grade students, Jerry Reynolds. Reynolds spoke to the crowd about how much the ceremony meant to him and why he thinks it’s important for younger kids to understand the meaning of Veterans Day.

“It’s always an honor to be able to speak, especially about something you think a lot of, and I think a lot about our country. Welti Elementary has done a really wonderful job tonight and I am just proud to see these young people participate in a program like this,” Reynolds said. “We’ve got a small group with us here tonight, but there are veterans all over this community and we need to make sure they know they’re appreciated. Since the first shots were fired at Lexington and Concord in the Revolutionary War, Americans have been eager to answer the call to duty and millions have given their lives for their country over the years. I am so proud of our veterans and they are the reason why today I have the freedom to say, ‘God bless America.’”

Copyright 2017 Humble Roots, LLC. All Rights Reserved.