Northville and Broadalbin-Perth schools recognize local veterans prior to Veterans Day.

David Smith
Read Time4 Minute, 22 Second
Veterans Day
  • Broadalbin-Perth Elementary School hosted close to 70 veterans at a school-wide celebration Thursday.
  • The crowd moved into the school gym for the remainder of the day’s ceremony.
  • Fifth-grader Dominic DeMarco served as the master of ceremonies at the Northville event,

The Northville and Broadalbin-Perth school districts in Fulton County each staged their own Veterans Day programs on Thursday, honoring local service members for their sacrifices to the nation.

On Thursday, the Broadalbin-Perth Elementary School hosted close to 70 veterans for a school-wide celebration.

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Outside of the primary school, school personnel and administrators joined 900 pupils and veterans to watch a military flyover. As three planes flew above the school, the crowd applauded and cheered. One of the planes, a T-6, was carrying the day’s keynote speaker, Dr. Baron McCombs, a retired US Army paratrooper and instructor.

For the remainder of the ceremony, the throng migrated into the school gymnasium.

Veterans Day

McCombs informed the kids that he would instruct them on how to “speak army.” He instructed the children that when he asks them a question, they should react with “Hooah!” if they agree. Students yelled “Hooah!” in response to questions he posed about veterans and why Veterans Day is commemorated throughout his presentation.

“If any of you live in America, and I believe everyone here does,” McCombs stated. “And if you have the Constitution, which safeguards your liberty, you may thank a soldier. The outcome of the American Revolution came perilously close to being different. If you reside in the United States and speak English instead of German or Japanese, you can thank a soldier for the fact that World War II could have had a different conclusion.

On Thursday morning, the auditorium at Northville Elementary School was packed with district kids and area veterans who heard a series of performances by pupils, including a rendition of “You’re A Grand Old Flag” by the middle school chorus.
Tammy Reidell, principal of Northville Elementary School, expressed gratitude that the district could once again host the annual Veterans Day event in person after two years of holding virtual ceremonies.

She stated, “I just think it makes things so much more important and emotional when people are in the same room.” They actually have the opportunity to hear songs and lectures. It is made much more special by the presence of several veterans.

Dominic DeMarco, a fifth-grader, served as the event’s master of ceremonies in Northville, introducing each speech and musical performance. DeMarco, whose brother Will serves in the military, stated that the annual honoring of veterans holds special significance for him.

“Veterans Day is to recognize all of the veterans who fought for our country in the military,” he stated. They make it possible for us to attend school and learn.

The celebration at Broadalbin-Perth Elementary School featured a variety of music, poems, and speeches honoring soldiers.

The gymnasium of the school was adorned with red, white, and blue banners reading “Thank You Veterans” and “Happy Veterans Day.”

Stephen Tomlinson, superintendent of schools, stated that he is linked to a large number of veterans, which is why the holiday is so significant to him.

Tomlinson stated, “Veterans Day is a very personal holiday for me.” “It’s personal because I know that every step I take on this land is because individuals fought for and continue to safeguard our freedom.”

Tomlinson explained that veterans defend democracy in the face of daily threats.

Co-Principal of Broadalbin-Perth Elementary School Dan Casey thanked the veterans for their service and attendance at the ceremony.

Casey stated, “We are pleased to bring back this celebration.” We hope that all of our veterans will acknowledge their immense value to our community.

Ed Lent, a fifth grade teacher in Northville, was pleased to resume the annual celebration of local veterans in person.

“It is truly a fantastic moment to have everyone in this room,” Lent added. “Stuff was lovely having it for the past few years, but nothing compares to having it all in one place. We heard praise for the local veterans, and my family has a long history of veterans. It is vital that these children acknowledge our soldiers and all they have done for us.

A 30-minute slide display completed the Northville event honoring 125 area veterans. Lent noted that the number of honorees has increased significantly since the district began the slide show in 2016.

“I believe we had fifty slides at the time, and every year since then it has grown,” Lent added.

Carolyn Wilcox, vice president of the Northville Central School Board of Education, delivered the keynote address at the Thursday morning event, noting that each veteran has a unique story to tell about their service to the country.

Wilcox told the crowd, “I believe that many civilians do not realize that the military is as diverse as the communities we come from.” Veterans of different religions, ethnicities, races, orientations, identities, and cultures vary in what they did and how they feel about their service. Military service is also influenced by the political, social, and emotional climate of the nation at the time.

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