🎖️ South County Middle School Welcomes Honor Flight Veterans on 79th Anniversary of D-Day

By Office of Communication and Community Relations
June 14, 2023

On June 6, the 79th anniversary of D-Day, students from South County Middle School had the privilege of welcoming 95 Greater St. Louis Honor Flight and Kansas City Honor Flight veterans to the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.

vet shakes hands with student

Students prepared for this day by making 133 patriotic fleece blankets for the veterans on their flight home. Students also created personalized signs and interactive cards with QR codes (which the students helped the older veterans use) thanking each veteran for their service. Three of the veterans—including one who is 101 years old—served in World War II. The rest of the veterans served in Vietnam.

student hugging veteran“Seeing the smiles on their faces makes me so happy,” said seventh grader, Adalia. “I want them to know how important they are to Americans. If it wasn’t for them, we wouldn’t have all the freedoms we have today.”

Additionally, three students partnered with the three WWII veterans (one of whom is pictured below) for a wreath laying at the Freedom Wall to honor those who served and lost their lives. A representative from Honor Flight then read the words from General Dwight D. Eisenhower’s radio broadcasted speech on June 5, 1944, “The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you.”

This year-long service-learning project was made possible due to the generous donations by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 7327 in Springfield. This was the sixth consecutive year seventh-graders at South County have completed this project. 

A son of one of the veterans who traveled alongside him as his guardian said that he was “moved to almost tears by the cheers and handmade signs these beautiful kids presented to our veterans.” He continues, “we were floored by the generosity of the kids when they presented every single veteran with the gift of a handmade card and blanket. Wow! Simply amazing and heartwarming.”

student shakes hand of veteran

The additional ~30 blankets were donated to VWF Post 12218 in Haymarket to be distributed to Wounded Warrior veterans and a rehab facility for veterans.

students holding up blanket they made for veteran

Through community service, the students are practicing the Portrait of a Graduate attribute of ethical and global citizens by going beyond their school’s walls to make a positive change in the world.

students hold signs to receive veterans