Veteran's Day is celebrated on November 11th each year to honor those men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice. At OLHMS, we show our thanks and gratitude to all Veterans, especially those within our Oak Lawn and Hometown communities. OLHMS celebrated the patriotism and sacrifices of these heroes on Friday, November 4th during our annual Veteran's Day Assembly. This year, we were able to host our all-school assembly in person for the first time since the pandemic. OLHMS 8th Grade Student Ambassadors welcomed over 90 Veterans to the ceremony and Mrs. Kate Ryan, OLHMS Global Studies teacher, gave the opening remarks and welcomed the OLHMS community and Veterans to the celebration.
The Presentation of Colors was presented by the Richards High School NJROTC accompanied by a Veteran's Reflection later in the program from Mr. Douglas J. Groters CDR, USN Ret., Senior Naval Science Instructor at Richards High School. After the Presentation of the Colors and the reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance and National Anthem, we took a moment to thank all of the veterans. Spencer M. And Jakob G., 8th Grade Ambassadors, said every veteran’s name to recognize and honor them. Our OLHMS Concert Chorus and Sunrise Singers sang “Armed Forces- The Pride of America!” by Larry Clark and Greg Gilpin, which honors The United States Army, The United States Marines, The United States Navy, The United States Coast Guard, and The United States Air Force. After the beautiful performance by our OLHMS Concert Chorus and Sunrise Singers, Mr. Terry Vorderer addressed the OLHMS student body with a Veteran’s Reflection.
Mr. Terry Vorderer served in the United States Army, 1st Infantry Division, he is a retired Oak Lawn Police Chief and Patrol, and he currently serves as Oak Lawn’s Mayor. Mayor Vorderer had a profound speech to our OLHMS Mustangs, as well as WWII Army Veteran Mr. Joe Fleck. When Mr. Fleck got to the podium, it was as if our students’ history books came to life. Mr. Fleck shared his stories of the war, and also emphasized the importance of our students’ future. Mr. Fleck stated to our OLHMS students that they are “the future of America… take good care of it.”
After Mr. Fleck's reflection, we heard a speech from 7th grade student Aidan Z., a reflection from the Honor Flight Chicago, beautiful performances from our OLHMS Concert Band, and Emma A. honored and recognized all of the fallen soldiers at The Fallen Soldier Table. Finally, our OLHMS Veteran’s Day Assembly ended with Taps from Mr. Steve Imig, Army veteran of the 6th Army Headquarters, and closing remarks from Mrs. Kate Ryan.
Thank you Mrs. Georgelos, Mrs. Ryan, and everyone who dedicated endless hours to make our Veteran’s Day Assembly a success. And most importantly, thank you to our Veterans who served our country- thank you for your service!
The entire assembly can be viewed below.