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Press and Guide
Students honor veterans
Published: Monday, November 11, 2013
By Katie Hetrick
Press & Guide Newspapers
DEARBORN — Veterans have protected our freedom and returned home to improve their communities, speakers told students during Lowrey School’s Veterans Day ceremony.
Stiff winds, 42-degree weather and threatening rain did not keep dignitaries away from Monday’s solemn ceremony, the 83rd such remembrance held at the school.
“Veteran’s Day is a time to honor all who served our country,” said Principal Rima Younes. Lowrey’s ceremony included reading the names of 47 former Lowrey students who gave their lives in service to their country.
Those attending the event included State Rep. George Darany (D-Dearborn), County Commissioner Gary Woronchak (D-Dearborn), Supt. Brian Whiston, Judge Sam Salamey, Judge Mark Somers, Trustee Hussein Berry, Police Chief Ronald Haddad, Fire Chief Joseph Murray and other school and elected officials. The Dearborn Allied War Veterans Council provided a color guard.
Dearborn Mayor Jack O’Reilly said, “Lowrey has produced hundreds, maybe thousands of veterans.”
While the 47 who died were being remembered by name, many more left their homes and their lives to travel overseas to serve their country, O’Reilly said. The military is a huge organization that not only trains soldiers, but provides education in a wide range of careers such as doctors, attorneys and engineers, he told students. Those people then make advancements both in the military and as civilians back at home.
“They made this society we live in better because of their service,” O’Reilly said.
Veterans have gone on to serve as governors and even presidents, the mayor said.
“They are all around us. The thing special about them is they took time from their lives to serve all of us,” he said.
Supt. Brian Whiston reminded the Lowrey students that they are able to make choices and enjoy freedoms many other children and even adults in other parts of the world may never know.
He said he wanted to especially remember his father who was twice injured in the service and for a time had to live in trees during the day and sneak down at night to get food and water.
Before reading the names of the fallen Lowrey soldiers, Assistant Principal Steven Saleh thanked other staff for helping him figure out how to pronounce the names. He said the variation showed the mix of ethnic and cultural groups who sacrificed for their country.
Chaplain Thomas Houle with the Dearborn Allied War Veterans Council said the day was a chance to honor all those veterans who sacrificed for their country.
“We especially pray for those vets who have made the ultimate sacrifice,” Houle said.
He prayed that their sacrifice could be used to create a more loving world and to promote peace.
Younes said because of the sacrifice of such men and women “our country still stands as a beacon of freedom.”
The ceremony was a chance to honor their service, to celebrate the freedom they protected but also to remember the hardships of war, she said before calling for a moment of silence.
“Let us all move forward with the hope of a future filled with peace,” Younes said.
Katie Hetrick covers Dearborn Public Schools. She can be reached at email@example.com
Lowrey spent the morning honoring the nation’s veterans, as well as their own. Some forty-one Lowrey graduates eventually fought for our freedom in foreign wars, and never made it back home. Students, members of the community, and district administrators were part of the school’s 83rd Annual Veterans Day program in front of the school. The Dearborn Allied War Veterans Council was in attendance with its Honor Guard Salute and playing of TAPS. The young students showed their respect and thanks for Veterans by reciting The National Anthem, singing “My America”, and placing carnations at the foot of the school’s flag pole, one for each of the former Lowrey students who paid the ultimate sacrifice.