Honoring Veterans: Berryville assemblies recognize military service
By Haley Schichtl
Berryville schools held a pair of assemblies in honor of Veterans Day, with one event on Friday at the intermediate school and the second Monday at Berryville High School.
Fifth-grade teacher and Air Force veteran Rachel Harlan was the featured speaker at the intermediate school’s assembly.
“The service members that we honor on Veterans Day come from all walks of life and backgrounds, but they share some important qualities. They possess courage, pride, determination, selflessness, dedication and integrity,” Harlan said.
She also addressed women’s roles in the military.
“When you see me, I may not be that first image of what you think of when you hear that word veteran,” Harlan said. “Women have always been present in our military’s vitality and success; however, they’re seldom ever recognized. It is only in the past three years that the Department of Defense has lifted all restrictions … on the roles that women can perform in the military.”
Music teacher Renée Correll directed fourth-grade classes as they sang patriotic songs throughout the assembly, including John Phillip Sousa’s “The Washington Post” and “Stars and Stripes Forever,” John Stafford Smith’s “The Star-Spangled Banner,” Irving Berlin’s “God Bless America,” and Teresa Jennings’ “Those Who Served” and “American Tears.”
The high school’s assembly featured performances from both the choir and the band.
The celebration opened with students Jade Harrell and Christena Matzeder welcoming everyone, and Bonnie Hausman and Kenzie Conklin gave the presentation of the colors.
The band performed “The Star Spangled Banner” and “Salute to the Armed Forces,” as student council vice president Shane Wilson narrated and veterans stood as their branches were presented. Wilson then told the story of the song “Taps,” and trumpet player Daniel Coley played it.
The Berryville Choir sang “Love: Then and Still” by Susan LaBarr as Ellen Foncannon Stephenson played piano.
Harrell and Matzeder presented certificates of appreciation to each of the veterans, and the colors were retired to close the ceremony.