HENDERSONVILLE, N.C. (Nov. 10, 2022) – In honor of the men and women who served in the United States Armed Forces, staff and students from across Henderson County Public Schools (HCPS) are pausing to recognize those who have so clearly demonstrated the values of service, sacrifice, inclusion, and love of country.
Throughout the month of November, which is Veterans History Awareness Month in North Carolina, students across the HCPS family honor veterans in numerous ways.
Students are spending the month observing the national holiday with a myriad of activities ranging from designing bulletin boards that feature family veterans, hosting luncheons and writing thank you letters to veterans in the community, reading books, writing poems, and honoring fallen veterans with flags and songs.
“It is a time of reflection and a special day where we get to honor all veterans past and present. We are especially grateful for our HCPS colleagues who are veterans and consider ourselves fortunate to work alongside them as they continue to serve their community, said Mark R. Garrett, HCPS District Superintendent.
On Nov. 11, Americans pause to reflect and honor the 19 million veterans who have served in the United States Armed Forces, a tradition that has lasted for nearly 70 years.
Activities around Henderson County Public Schools:
Flat Rock Middle School recognized four staff members who served in the U.S. Armed Forces, giving special recognition to bus driver and custodian, Wayne Buckner. In addition to his 33 years with HCPS and Flat Rock Middle School, Buckner is a Vietnam Veteran, Army Specialist 4th Class. He was awarded a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star for his heroic service in a combat zone.
During the school’s Veterans’ Day ceremony, Buckner was surprised with a gift of a special United States flag, one that had flown in front of the school for the last six years. The Henderson County Law Enforcement Honor Guard held a ceremony in October to retire the flag. As the new flag was raised, school officials presented Buckner with the gift of the retired flag.
Students at Clear Creek Elementary School proudly raised for the first time their very own official NC State Flag on Thursday. The flag is certified as having flown over the state capital in Raleigh. It was a gift to the school thanks to 5th grade teacher Kristi Kicklighter, who reached out to U.S. Sen. Chuck Edwards. Edwards helped facilitate getting the flag for the school, and attended the school’s Veterans’ Day Celebration for staff, students and families.
Edneyville Elementary School had a full day of activities on Wednesday, November 9 for students and local veterans, including a luncheon and program that included the Presentation of Colors by North Henderson High’s JROTC. The veterans exited the building through a parade of students and teachers waving American flags.
At East Henderson High, staff members who are veterans were recognized throughout the week during morning announcements. Additionally, graduating seniors who have committed to a branch of service were also recognized. US Air Force Veteran Jason Corbett, an English teacher at East, read a personal narrative about his father’s service in Vietnam. He also shared with his classes some memorabilia and photos from his own service.
North Henderson High School deployed a four person JROTC Color Guard to Edneyville Elementary School during its Veterans’ Day program. North students also generated more than 70 letters for veterans at Carolina Village Retirement Center.
Earlier in November, Mills River Elementary honored veterans with a salute to military families, a breakfast, parade, program, and classroom chats with veterans. The parade was a special moment with students chanting “USA,” in the hallways and waving American flags.