Mackenzie students honor veteran family members

SUSAN WADE
Posted 11/14/19

GLEN SPEY, NY — In a poignant melding of social studies, family pride and patriotism, Mackenzie pre-Kindergarteners through sixth graders created a heroes’ wall honoring their relatives …

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Mackenzie students honor veteran family members

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GLEN SPEY, NY — In a poignant melding of social studies, family pride and patriotism, Mackenzie pre-Kindergarteners through sixth graders created a heroes’ wall honoring their relatives who have served in the military.

This year, Veterans Day has become more than a day off from school, as students were invited to complete forms listing their relatives’ name, branch of service and period of military service and include a photograph of their loved one in uniform. One student’s form recorded the tribute to his dad who had served in Iraq, and included the notation, “He is my hero.”

The posters are mounted under a caption that says, “Dedicated to all veterans of all wars and conflicts that brought honor to our country and promise to our dreams.”

Spearheaded by Linda Hazen and Jennifer Mohan as part of the school-wide social studies project, the students have learned that although the United States has been involved in military conflicts for their entire lives, the last declared war was WWII. All subsequent military actions, including those in Korea, Vietnam and Grenada, and the post-9/11 War on Terror, have been categorized as conflicts, meaning that Congress has not officially declared war in any of these instances.

The hero wall honors grandfathers and great-grandfathers who served in WWII and Korea, grandfathers who saw action in Vietnam, and many fathers and uncles who have served in Afghanistan and other parts of the Middle East, as well as non-fighting locations. There were also a smattering of mothers, aunts and cousins listed. Some teachers participated in honoring relatives as well, including one who listed her mother-in-law who served in the Navy during WWII.

The branches represented were Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines. Over 120 posters were included on the hero wall and more were being added daily.

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