ELHS honors veterans

Veterans who served in several branches of the military, during World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, the Cuban Conflict and peacetime had a place of honor in the front row at East Liverpool High School Thursday. (Photo by Jo Ann Bobby-Gilbert)

EAST LIVERPOOL — “I fought for you … and I’d do it again.”

That was the message shared in a moving video between students and veterans who visited East Liverpool High School Thursday to be honored in observance of Veterans Day.

The video showed a grandfather taking his young sons to a movie theater where they quickly lost interest in their video games as they watched movie reels of historic battles such as the attack on Pearl Harbor and D-Day.

Not a sound could be heard in the auditorium yesterday as students viewed what to them was a part of history and what to the veterans was part of their experience.

Teacher Jason Croxall told the students he hoped the video gave them some insight about the men they were honoring, several of whom had left the halls of East Liverpool schools “and left their mark.”

Croxall said, “They answered that call and still answer that call today. It’s because of their willingness to serve our country and their sacrifice, we’re able to be here today.”

Guest speaker was 2004 graduate Josh Hissom, a former U.S. Marine and member of the Reserves who served three tours in Iraq and is now a city firefighter.

He told the students that, although he has “lived everywhere, I always wanted to come back to East Liverpool, because this is my home.”

He deployed as a diesel mechanic but ended up building and then, ultimately, trained as a sniper.

Hissom encouraged the students to consider joining the military for the opportunities it offers, saying, “It helps you grow, it helps you grow up, gives you financial stability and lifelong friendships.”

The National Honor Society hosted a breakfast for the veterans prior to the program, which also featured the color guard of the Tri-State Burial Group, the high school choir and senior class president Tyler Adkins and NHS president Rebecca Wright leading the Pledge of Allegiance.

Veterans honored during the event included school board president Larry Walton, who served in the U.S. Army and board member Richard Wolf, who served in the U.S. Navy in Korea.

At the conclusion of the program, students had an opportunity to greet and thank the veterans for their service.