Bridgeport School District holds veterans assembly

By Adrienne Douke
Empire Press Correspondent

Bridgeport School District held a veterans assembly Nov. 9 in the high school gym. Students in grades K-12 participated in the event honoring America’s veterans.

The Honor Guard from Brewster American Legion Post 97 presented the colors to begin the assembly. Participating in the guard were Frank Williver, William Shenyer, Robert Johnson and Bob Lewis.

The bleachers on both sides of the gym were filled with an enthusiastic audience of students, staff, family and friends. They listened as the Bridgeport Junior and Senior High School Choir sang a medley of songs from the World War I era, arranged by music director Derek Pulsifer. The medley included “It’s a Long Way to Tipperary” by Henry James Williams, “Keep the Home Fires Burning (Till the Boys Come Home)” by Ivor Novello, and “Over There” by George M. Cohan. An original piece was composed by Pulsifer to accompany the war poem “In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae.

“This is the work I originally arranged for our regional Sarge Huber honor festival as a grand finale to give all choirs an opportunity to sing together,” said Pulsifer. “Since this Veterans Day marks the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, we thought it would be an appropriate musical selection to honor our veterans and to celebrate the original Armistice Day.”

Grades 1-6, led by elementary music teacher Mark Brown, sang “You are Our Heroes” by Teresa Jennings.

“I chose the song because it was written for the heroes of 9/11,” said Brown. “It was easy to apply it to those who serve our country in the military. So we thank them and say, ‘You are Our Heroes.’ I am proud of our young singers, they did a great job.”

A slideshow tribute was presented to commemorate veterans throughout U.S. history who fought bravely for the freedoms Americans enjoy. Following the tribute, a video about servicemen and women who returned home to surprise loved ones was shown.

Leading up the the assembly, the Bridgeport School District Multicultural Club held a “Jeans for Troops” fundraiser to help veterans with employment, health care and housing.

English language learners teacher and Multicultural Club advisor Jessica Herrejon organized the fundraiser and said it was successful.

“The fundraiser went well. Our club felt that it was important to help our veterans get the support they need,” she said.

At the end of the assembly, Lewis played taps.

Elementary School Principal Jesse Macy concluded, “We appreciate our veterans, and we are proud to honor our veterans and their service to our country. We thank them for their bravery and their sacrifice.”