Calais High Students Pay Tribute with Veterans Day Ceremony

By Jayna Smith

Local military Veterans were honored Monday at a ceremony held at Calais High School.  The eight students who make up Mrs. Lori Ellis’ AP English class worked diligently organizing the annual Veterans Day Ceremony.

With standing room only, the ceremony started with the high school band’s performance of “This is My Country” while the Color Guard presented the flags, followed by Jackson Greenlaw singing “Star Spangled Banner” acapella.   

A welcome speech, thanking and honoring all Veterans, was given by Jacques Skriletz.  “Today we also remember and honor those who are not here,” Skriletz stated.  “We are eternally thankful for their sacrifice.”

 Ellie Cox and Brooke Smith gave a heartfelt rendition of America’s White Table.  As Cox read the symbolism of each item at the table, Smith performed the ceremony of setting it:  a lemon slice and grains of salt on a plate to show a captive soldier’s bitter fate and tears of families waiting for loved ones to return, an empty chair representing the missing soldiers, a black napkin symbolizing the sorrow of captivity, concluding with placement of a white candle for peace and a red rose for the hope that all our missing will return someday.

Dominic Gayton presented a history of Veterans Day, while Perry Amos played a video which included interviews with local Veterans Tim Fullerton, Howard Duvall, and Bob Moholland.  Mayez Travis and Jacques Skriletz performed a candle lighting ceremony with a brief overview of each branch of service, and Veteran Sam Coltart performed a patriotic medley on his saxophone.

Jackson Greenlaw presented the closing speech.  “Today we have all gathered here for one purpose:  to honor the men and women who so deserve it,” he said.  “We have this assembly every year to attempt to do this but one gathering cannot suffice to pay honors to these men and women.  We have to try to take this assembly out the door.  These men and women deserve respect that cannot be given in one dose.”

The Calais High School AP English Class wishes to thank the following for their support of and assistance with the Veterans Day Ceremony:  WalMart, Shop ‘n Save, Dunkin Donuts, Flowers by Janie, Tim Hortons, Knock on Wood, IGA, The Calais Advertiser, City of Calais, WQDY, Tim Fullerton, Howard Duvall, Bob Moholland, The Color Guard, Bill McVicar, David Sivret, Jeff Demmons, Mike McLean, Sam Coltart, Tom McLaughlin, Kaleigh Deacon, Alison Brennan, Eileen Clark, Brian Duffy, Husa Eagan, Janet Moholland, John Moody, Lacey Phelps, Janet Proulx, Pat Sammer, Sandra Sawyer, Kathy Smith, Sandie Wong, CHS Band, Mrs. Cox’s Life Skills Class, Robbinston Grade School, CHS Students Kylie Donovan and Trent Stevens.