LAUREL — Laurel-Concord High School graduate, Randy Stingley, Norfolk, was the speaker for the Friday, Nov. 10 Veterans Day program at the Laurel-Concord-Coleridge School.
Senior Zach Dietrich welcomed the guests and the American Legion and VFW members presented the Colors. The Laurel-Concord-Coleridge High School Band played the National Anthem and several other patriotic numbers.
Stingley began by asking the students what the colors of the flag represent. They answered correctly, white for purity and innocence, red for hardiness and valor and blue for justice, perseverance and vigilance.”
They also knew that each star represents a state and that the 13 red and white stripes stand for the 13 original colonies.
He explained that when the National Anthem is played, veterans may salute the flag and all others are to place their right hand over their heart to show respect for the flag.
“I have never left my family for months to fight for and defend my country, worn the uniform, shot at the enemy, or held a dying friend,” he said. He then addressed the veterans, saying, “I have no idea what you have experienced, your suffering, bravery, fear and your survival. I know nothing of what you know.”
Stingley said he is grateful for the service and sacrifices these local vets have made for our country.
“I’m here before you as a grateful American who has the opportunity to tell all veterans how thankful and proud of you we are, not just today, but everyday. Without what Veterans have done, we wouldn’t have the freedoms we so carelessly enjoy,” he said.
Although he wasn’t in the military he has found a way to serve. Because of his father’s membership in the American Legion, Stingley was eligible to join the Sons of the American Legion and is a member of Post 16 Legion Riders where he is a Road Captain. “This is the way I serve, by helping veterans and their families when volunteering to help with flag lines, etc.”
The first grade students at LCC then presented the veterans with thank you letters and drawings and thanked them for their service.
The LCCHS choir sang, “We Honor You,” The veterans were then recognized as they stood while the march for their branch of service was played. The program ended with the playing off Taps and Retrieval of Colors.