House Creek Elementary School celebrates Veterans Day
By PAMELA GRANT
More than 600 students, dozens of parents, and House Creek Elementary staff members sprawled around the school’s parking lot as they participated in the school’s annual Veteran’s Day parade.
House Creek Elementary’s annual Veteran’s Day celebration started with the parade, with parents of the students, especially veterans and active-duty parents, invited to participate alongside their children.
“It’s pretty cool to have the local schools support the military,” said Bart Palmieri, Sergeant 1st Class with the 3rd Cavalry Regiment, who marched in the parade alongside his daughter Kensliegh (5). “It’s important for the kids to know how special the United States military is and what we have done for the country.”
Palmieri said that he was more than happy to come out to Thursday’s parade to support his daughter, the school, and the kids.
“Especially since we have so many military students, we really like the whole community to come in and recognize and celebrate our veterans,” said school principal, Todd Williams. House Creek has one of the highest percentages of children of military active-duty members in the city. “We want the kids to understand how important our veterans are and how much we appreciate them.”
The Student 2 Student group did the bulk of the planning for the parade.
“This is one of the best days of the year, just being able to bring in the families for Veteran’s Day. We always celebrate it,” said House Creek Elementary counselor, Amy Simpson. “So many of [our students] are military connected that it’s important that we celebrate it each year.”
House Creek Elementary’s Student 2 Student group helped their school earn the title of Best Elementary School in the World for Military Kids. Simpson said that it’s important to her to make sure that military kids know that they have a community here and to give them something to help ground them and help with their emotional well-being.
Four 5th graders in the S2S program—William Chauvin, James Kirkham, Mialani Alvarado Rivera, and Kolten Jackson—shared their thoughts on the military, the parade, and welcoming military families to the community.
“I think it was a very good parade,” said Chavin shortly after finishing marching in the parade. “They protect our country.”
“They sacrifice their lives for us,” said all four in unison.
“It’s only right to honor them,” finished Kirkham.
Kirkham said that it’s hard starting over and it’s their job to help other military families when they move to the area. “It’s hard starting over,” said Kirkham.
“They move to a new school, and they need some new friends,” said Jackson. “They need at least one friend. We want them to be happy.”