Students Hear Accounts Of Dedication, Service From Local Veterans

By Frank Sinatra, AAP Editor

In observance of Veterans Day, a group of Pennsauken High School students heard real-life accounts of military service.

Students gathered in the high school’s library to hear from several members of the “Buffalo Soldiers,” African American members of the military who got their name from the first entirely black regiment who fought in the Indian Wars in the 1860s. The young people intently listened to veterans Mr. Thompson, Mr. Walker, Mr. Linton, Mr. Blackwell, and Mr. Groce, who shared their stories of service to their country, often in the midst of discrimination and racism. They also heard from PHS alumni, Randy Maute, ’68, who served in the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War; as well as Michael Panarella, ’68, chairperson of the Pennsauken High School Alumni Veterans Memorial Committee, the group responsible for the placement of the permanent memorial on the ground of Pennsauken High School that honors all of Pennsauken’s veterans. Not a cell phone distraction was in sight, as students took in the messages of dedication, service, and sacrifice.

Students and local veterans took part in a special ceremony in observance of Veterans Day.

After the presentations, students and veterans gathered outside near the veterans memorial for a special ceremony, where the Pennsauken High School Band, under the direction of Nick DeNofa, as well as the Double Dozen Choir, under the direction of Kate Brown, performed patriotic songs. And as the ceremony concluded, students walked away inspired by the local veterans, and had a better understanding of the quote from poet John Maxwell Edmonds engraved on the monument: “When you go home, tell them of us and say, ‘For their tomorrow, we gave our today.’”

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