KCS hosts vets, grandparents
The day started with an assembly, which included prayer, presentation of the Colors, Pledge of Allegiance and speaker James E. Fox, U.S. Army, retired, of Farragut.
“As a veteran, I am especially honored to be here,” said Fox, who served during the Vietnam War era, between 1969 and 1975, at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, and Fort Gordon, Georgia. He served as KCS president from 2007 and 2014 and remains active with the school, still serving as its legal council and as a school board member.
He presented an American flag to KCS president Robert “Bobby” Simpson and students.
Fox said as he looked at the audience, he was “transported back to a time we spent almost 40 years here.
“Our children and grandchildren all went to school here, and we have a deep love for this school and for all of you,” he added.
Fox related how Veterans Day began as “Armistice Day,” a holiday to honor the end of World War I in 1918. Legislation passed in 1938 that Nov. 11 was “dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be hereafter celebrated as Armistice Day.”
He said the name of the day changed in 1954, when Congress — “at the urging of veteran service organizations — amended the Act of 1938 to recognize this day as Veterans Day to honor American veterans of all wars.
“Many of you here today have worn the uniform of the armed forces or have members of your family or know others who have served,” Fox said. “We know there are those of you who have lost loved ones in the service.”
He said the country’s liberties have been challenged over the course of the country’s history. “Brave men and women — our veterans — have fought to preserve and protect those principles on which our country was founded, and with God’s help, this country and it’s way of life have been preserved,” Fox said. “The protection of these freedoms has often come at a high price.”
The assembly program progressed with songs from pre-kindergarten children to fifth graders before grandparents and veterans visited classrooms for craft projects and refreshments.
“I’m so grateful so many people remember,” said Joseph Jimenez, a U.S. Navy veteran who served in the Solomon Islands in World War II, from 1944 to 1946.
“I love it,” said Bud Ford, who served between 1986 and 2008 in Operation Desert Storm, Iraq and Afghanistan. “I think it’s a great event. The kids did a great job, and they did their grandparents proud.”
“It’s a pretty good (event),” said Michael Patrick, grandparent to second-grader Abigail and first-grader Megan Patrick. “I think it’s a good opportunity to celebrate grandparents and veterans.”