DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — This Veterans Day, students at Fairview Elementary got a visit from the brave men and women who have served in our military.
Veterans flanked a line of students in the gym as part of the school’s monthly “clap-in,” encouraging and high-fiving those who make up the next generation of fighters.
“I believe that more is caught than taught, and what I mean by that is that we don’t have to always preach to children,” says Dormetria Thompson, the Out of School Director for Omega Community Development Corporation. “They pick up a lot of cues by our presence and by what they see and by what they feel.”
While the day is traditionally spent honoring those who’ve served, they recognize they’re not the only ones on the front lines.
“Our community leaders and our school administrators and our teachers are doing an awesome sacrifice for our children,” says Yvonne Brackens who served in the U.S. Air Force for 19 and a half years.
“I just felt like it was my obligation to give back to the community because at the end of the day it’s not about us veterans. It’s about those that we promise to defend and protect,” says Jacob Sakelos, currently serving in the U.S. Army Reserves.
Even after their time in the military, some are still serving in other capacities.
“In fact, in this building there is a United States Navy veteran who was not a part of our clap-in because he was with his students,” says Thompson. “He’s a prime example of how even in this building we have veterans who are giving back in a different capacity, still serving our country by serving our students.”
With experiences that only those who wear the uniform understand, they left all students with a lesson that can be applied to all aspects of life.
“Never… never never never give up,” says Allen Huff, a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps.
Fairview Elementary School started the clap-in in August as a way to get students motivated.
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