Lori Fullbright, News On 6
CLAREMORE, Oklahoma -- The students of Claremore's Westside Elementary school put on a moving tribute to veterans Wednesday.
They invited SkyNews6 pilot Will Kavanagh, who's just recently returned from serving in Iraq, and myself, who went there to cover Oklahoma soldiers on the war front.
Will and I landed Sky News 6 at Westside. It was the first time I'd flown with him since I flew missions with him in a Black hawk over Iraq last spring.
The program honored veterans from all branches of the service and all eras. The students showed their gratitude through song for the nearly 100 veterans in attendance.
Ralph Stone is a World War II veteran. He was 19 years old when he signed up. He was with the Army Medical Corps overseas and wants people to appreciate the United States Of America.
"I love it," he said. One hundred percent American. Everything we do is great. Just go to another country to see how great we really are."
Will Kavanagh was invited to the program by school librarian, Sue Lamb, who was touched by our stories of Will and his unit working and living in such tough conditions in Iraq.
"You get in an isolation mode there as a way to cope so to come home and see the appreciation not just from family, but, from the community, it warms the heart and really overwhelms you," Kavanagh said.
Each veteran received a certificate from Senator Sean Burrage's office. Students at Westside also put together 100 freedom boxes for the Blue Star Mothers to send to soldiers still on active duty.
The program was a moving reminder of the tremendous sacrifice our military men and women make for the rest of us.