Wolcott school thanks veterans

A special banner made by students at Frisbie Elementary School in Wolcott, as the welcomed veterans to school Thursday. (WTNH / Kent Pierce)

WOLCOTT, Conn. (WTNH) – At Frisbie Elementary in Wolcott, a different kind of lesson today. They are learning about veterans. Some already know a few things from their own fathers and grandfathers.

“He jumped out of planes,” said second grader Ella Gould about her father’s time in the Army. “And he learned how to go down ropes fast.”

“He was in one war and he had all those bombs, guns, and ammo on his ship,” said first grader Drew Gyditta about his grandfather’s experience in the Navy.

Today, those students got to share some of what they know with the rest of their school, escorting their families into the gym for a big thank you. Every grade took part in their own way, part teaching, part learning, all patriotism.

“To hear the kids who are interested to hear the guys who serve come in is great,” said Army veteran Ryan Gould, Ella’s father.

As happy as these veterans are to be here with their families and all the other adorable kids, they are even happier about the changing attitudes they are seeing when it comes to veterans.

“So many of the returning folks from Vietnam were literally spit on, made to feel shameful and so forth,” remembered Alan Sawyer, a grandfather of two students, who served in the Navy in the 1960s.

“I had 4 or 5 teachers that tried to discourage me from enlisting,” Ryan Gould said about his experience on graduating high school in 1997. “Now it’s honorable to go and serve and it’s a thing a lot of people want to see kids do.”

Thanks to lessons, like this, those kids are learning how important our veterans are.

“They made your country safe,” Lilly Gyditta summed up. Yes, they did, and we thank them for it.

If you would like to thank some veterans in person, there will be a ceremony on the town green at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, November 11th. They will be “retiring the colors.” All who served are invited. Kids in scouts are encouraged to wear their uniforms. If you have a flag that is damaged and needs to be disposed of properly, you can bring it to the ceremony.

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