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Local schools show thanks for veterans

Sinclaire Sparkman • Updated Nov 12, 2016 at 9:00 AM

Various schools in Wilson County held events to honor veterans on Thursday and Friday. 

Students at Sam Houston Elementray School held a special morning program that involved students dressing in red, white and blue to replicate the American flag in the bleachers and other patriotic dress. 

Several students throughout the program expressed their gratitude for the veterans with speeches and each grade performed a song dedicated to veterans, coordinated by music teacher Cinda Naylor. 

The entire student body joined together for a final song as American flags waved throughout the gym. 

Wilson County Commissioner and veteran Terry Ashe described the performance as “moving” and a fitting tribute. 

Watertown High School held a concert for American Legion Post 15 members and other veterans Thursday night. They performed America The Beautiful, God Bless America and other patriotic music in the high school auditorium. 

The Lebanon High School band wind ensemble presented their Veterans Day Salute concert in the LHS auditorium Friday night. The band played the National Anthem, Washington Post, On a Hymnsong of Philip Bliss, American Heroes, A Jefferson Portrait, America the Beautiful, As all the Heavens were a Bell and recited the pledge of allegiance.

Retired Col. Paul Wietlisbach narrated a portion of the evening, asking veterans to stand as their division’s tune was played during a special arrangement of America the Beautiful.Wietlisbach reminded the audience of the valor and resilience of those in the armed forces as he narrated through the songs. 

Wielisbach served in the Navy and the United States Air Force for more than 30 years. He earned his Bachelor of Science from the United State Naval Academy in 1976 and went on to join the Air Force. He logged more than 2000 hours of flight time and is now retired.

Xavier Smith contributed to this report.

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