RACINE — Students at Southern Local paid tribute to area veterans on Friday morning as part of the annual Veterans Day program.
Southern fourth grade teacher, and U.S. Air Force veteran, Missy Hoback served as the speaker for both the PreK-3 and the Grades 4-12 programs.
Delivering a slightly different message to each group, Hoback focused on the qualities learned by a member of the military, and how those same qualities can help make one a better student and person.
Among those qualities were discipline, punctuality, respect and teamwork.
“Joining the military was one of the best decisions,” said Hoback.
She concluded by challenging those in attendance to “thank a veteran.”
Each year, Southern Local honors one of its own as a special veteran honoree. This year’s recipient was Bill Cross, a Racine High School graduate who was a member of the U.S. Air Force. Cross was unable to attend, with the award accepted by one of his granddaughters.
At the beginning of the grades 4-12 program, Principal Daniel Otto noted that the district and school board has made it a point that students be in school on Veterans Day (or the day it is observed) as a way to teach students about the importance of the day.
Otto then passed the microphone around the gymnasium, asking each veteran in attendance to introduce his or herself. Two seniors, Jason Counts and Randall Moore were recognized as they have already committed to join the military following graduation.
Student Council President Connor Thomas told of the Legend of the Star, while National Honor Society officer Riley Roush, Miranda Greenlee, Sailor Warden and Nikita Wood read Veterans Day quotes.
Tony Deem and Ed Baker read the names of those who had mad “the ultimate sacrifice” as candles were extinguished and the bell was tolled.
Taps with an echo was played by Kalandra Nero and Claire Bradbury.
Three videos “11th Hour,” “When I’m Gone” and “No Greater Love.” were played as part of the program for the older students.
In the PreK-3rd grade program, first grade students sang patriotic songs, with music also played by the Southern High School Marching Band.