Veterans, families and friends turned out en force for the annual Learwood Middle School Veterans Day breakfast, Nov. 12.
The event kicked off in the school’s cafeteria where Learwood’s string orchestra performed a host of songs while peers served the vets.
Following, veterans moved to the auditorium where the American Legion Post 211 Honor Guard opened the ceremonies. Chaplain Jake Lundy led the group in prayer and assistant principal Brad Cocco offered welcoming comments.
“I’m not a veteran, but I’ve benefitted from the men and women who have served,” Cocco said.
Joe Benedict, the president of Honor Flight Cleveland invited veterans, especially World War II vets to enjoy the free “honor flights” from Cleveland to Baltimore, where veterans spend a day visiting war memorials.
Learwood students Clare Cantleberry, Caleb Orr, Molly Forrey, Helen Killius and Alex Melone read their Patriot's Pen Essays on What I Would Tell America's Founding Fathers.
Cantleberry said how founding fathers gave Americans the right to vote and make changes in her community.
“They chose to do what was right, and not what was easy,” Orr said, before noting his grandfather died in WWII.
People kept saying, “Thank you for coming,” he said.
“I’m here to say, ‘thank you for coming…thank you for serving,’ Zilka told veterans.
Mayor Greg Zilka talked about a visit to the beaches of Normandy on Armistice Day.
The keynote address was given by Avon Lake resident and parent Coast Guard Capt. Steve Torpey, the Chief of Response for District 9, who spoke of the more than 42 American million men and women who’ve served in the past 200 years.
Learwood teacher Kim Johnson and Kevin Riggs closed out the program before Abbi Tansey performed Taps.