Students help with vet history project

By Nancy Gutierrez

According to the United States Library of Congress, everyday 1,700 war veterans living in the US pass away, taking with them a part of American history that can never be regained.

In an effort to encapsulate the experiences of these men and women the United States Congress created the Veteran History Project. The project collects the stories and experiences of the nation's war veterans from their service in World War I, World War II, and the Korean, Vietnam and Persian Gulf wars. The project documents the contributions of military and civilian men and women who lived through those wars so that future generations can learn from those who served.

At noon on Friday Nov. 14 students at Wilson Middle School will take part in the Veterans History Project by interviewing veterans of the aforementioned wars during their annual Veterans Day Lunch held in the Wilson cafeteria.

"The students will ask the adults what their most outstanding memory of the war was," teacher Loretta Hicks said.

Hicks has been involved in Wilson's veterans lunch since its inception five years ago. Though they have always recorded the stories of local veterans for display they have never affiliated with the nationwide project.

"Our goal is to make the students see that we're apart of this country and the history that goes on. It helps them to be good citizens," she said. "We also want to honor those people who have been in war."

Wilson is inviting all veterans in the area to attend the special lunch. Especially those who have been in WWI, WWII, the Korean, Vietnam and Persian Gulf wars. The Wilson band will perform a patriotic concert and other classes have prepared skits to entertain participants.

Students will interview veterans throughout the event recording the entire conversation. Once all of the interviews are finished the compilations will be given to the Library of Congress. The Library of Congress will create a catalog of all the oral histories collected. It is also preserving documentary materials such as letters, diaries, maps, photographs, and home movies.

The names of all the veterans or civilians who were interviewed or whose documents and possessions are donated to the National Veterans History Collection will appear on the Veterans History Projects Web site,, in the future.

Other Vets Day activities

Rocky Hill: Students at Rocky Hill Elementary School will perform a musical patriotic tribute to veterans at 9:30 a.m. and 1:45 p.m. today Nov. 12 in the Rocky Hill cafeteria. More than 65 students from Loretta Bryant and Martha Karjala's classes have practiced for close to two months in preparation for today's performance. The musical play celebrates freedom and promotes power through knowledge of history.

Lincoln: Students at Lincoln invite familly and friends to attend a 9 a.m. assembly honoring veterans. The students will sing "Proud to be and American," during the assembly held in the Lincoln school cafetorium.

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