Veterans Assembly Held at CMHS

Local veterans from the extended Calais community were honored on November 3rd by the AP English class at Calais Middle High School. (Photo by Lura Jackson)

By Lura Jackson 

“For the good of the many, so give the few,” sang the CMHS chorus during a moving presentation honoring the many veterans of Eastern Washington County on Friday, November 3rd. The annual presentation, held in the cafeteria, was well-attended by local veterans and their families and Calais students of all ages.

The event is coordinated each year by the students of Lori Ellis’s AP English class, many of whom participate in the presentation in some capacity. Amanda O’Brien read “The Military Child” poem, adapted from Caroline Franklin Berry’s “The Soldier’s Wife”, Kale Sapiel provided the history of Veteran’s Day and presented America’s White Table with the assistance of Nathan Smith. The story of the white table tells the story of a symbolic table, each element of which reminds those that set it about the fundamental gift that each veteran has given, particularly those who, for one reason or another, do not come home.

A video of interviews with local veterans Sherry Sivret, Michael McLean, and Josh Morgan compiled by Dylan Carrier, Kylie Donovan, and Devon Carrier was shown. During the video, the subjects were asked a series of questions related to how their time in the military helped them to develop and better understand their personal character. “I gained a knowledge of who I am as a person, and the strengths that I have,” said Sherry Sivret in the video. She added that her time in the service taught her obedience and discipline. “I gained confidence and camaraderie,” said Michael McLean. “I learned to pay high attention to detail, and to accomplish the mission the best way you know how.”

 The CMHS band provided musical accompaniment throughout the presentation, regaling those present with classic patriotic tunes, including “Salute to Freedom,” “The Star Spangled Banner,” and “This is My Country.” Local musician Sammy Coltart played the appropriate theme of each branch of service while students presented veterans from those branches with a gift of a single red rose to thank them for their service to the country. Once the ceremonious presentation was complete, Amanda O’Brien read the closing speech. 

“Don’t think of Veteran’s Day as just a day off from school,” O’Brien urged her fellow students. “Think of every day as Veteran’s Day. The next time you see a veteran, be sure to thank them for their service.” 

Reading "America's White Table" to a respectful audience during the Veterans Assembly at Calais Middle High School on November 3rd is Kale Sapiel. (Photo by Lura Jackson)