Tuesday, May 24, 2016|Home|Features|News|Schools & Sports|Community Bulletins|Opinion  
Obituaries|Activities|Classifieds|Contact Us|Business News|Outdoors|Sheriff's report|Business Directory|Bulldog Senior Form|Announcement (CVR)|   
 Latest Cashmere, Washington, weather

Leavenworth Properties

Blewett pass
Snoqualmie Pass report
Stevens pass
Subscriber Login:
Last Name:
Subscriber Number:

home : news : news

11/13/2012 2:24:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
Photo by Kacie Thrift
Students from Vale Elementary and Cashmere Middle School lined Pioneer Avenue and Tigner Road as local veterans paraded from Vale to the Cashmere High School in honor of Veterans Day. This was the first time the Cashmere School District held a parade in honor of Veterans Day.
School District holds assembly to honor U.S. Military veterans
Kacie Thrift
Staff Writer

On Nov. 9 at the all district assembly, the high school band played each song of the service, and local U.S. Military veterans stood as they heard the song of the branch they served in.

For the first time, the Cashmere School District put on an all district parade and assembly to honor and celebrate the 2012 Veterans Day. In the past, each school has celebrated and honored veterans on their own. Multiple teachers and students came together so the school district could celebrate together.

Karin Blomquist, Cashmere High School leadership teacher, was a big part of the effort a long with teachers Shelly Milne, and Alicia and Don Smith.

"We had a couple of vets come to us in the past and tell us the middle school and high school assemblies are at the same time," Blomquist said. "We thought about how cool it would be for everyone to come together."

The day started with local war veterans going to the elementary school and gathering for a parade. After the parade, everyone met in the high school gym where many performances took place. The high school band and choir performed along with the fourth grade choir and middle school band.

After a few performances Shelby Simonson, the ASB President for the high school, Tate Christiansen, ASB middle school president, and Duke Odenrider, fourth grade representative introduced Mac Bledsoe, the guest speaker.

Bledsoe is a former teacher, coach, and is now a motivational speaker. He is the father of former Washington State University and NFL quarterback Drew Bledsoe. He is also the founder of Parenting with Dignity school curriculum and the Drew Bledsoe Foundation.

Bledsoe spoke to the gym full of community members, students, school staff, and war veterans, about the importance of informing children about the freedom we have today and why we have it.

The audience fell silent and listened intently as Bledsoe told a story his dad once told him. A story Bledsoe uses to educate students.

"The respect for that flag respect for our country, respect for our culture, and respect for great Americans, none of that is genetic. It's all learned and if the kids don't respect the flag, this nation, and the freedom the flag stands for, it's not an indictment of these kids but an indictment of you and our generation," Bledsoe said.

Bledsoe's story was one of his father's. When World War II broke out Stu Bledsoe was a sophomore at UCLA. When Pearl Harbor was attacked, he listened to the radio all night in his dorm room with his best friend. Stu Bledsoe's father, Stu, was at Pearl Harbor.

That night, the two men decided they would become pilots and enlist in the Naval Air Corps. Two years later, when Stu Bledsoe and his best friend Les were fighting, the two men were in a situation where a Japanese fighter pilot was on Stu Bledsoe's tail. Les told Stu Beldsoe to take a hard dive to the left so he could get this guy of his tail.

"Dad said, 'as I got to the bottom of my dive I started coming back up and looking through my canopy at the sky where my best friend should have been and all I saw was a ball of fire'," Bledsoe said as he told his father's story. "Dad said at that moment, 'I rode a rollercoaster of emotion because out of that ball of fire came a man and I thought oh he got out and will parachute to safety.'"

Unfortunately what Stu Bledsoe saw was his best friend's parachute fail. For minutes Stu Beldsoe watched his best friend falling with no hope of surviving. He circled his plane around his friend while he fell to his death.

"My Dad said, 'I knew I would see a man kicking and screaming but that's not what I saw'," Bledsoe said. "He said as my friend was falling to the earth he had a smile on his face.' Then dad said, 'he did a really amazing thing, he pointed to the front of his flight jacket where they had sewn an American flag'".

After his story, Bledsoe addressed the adults in the room telling them they have an obligation to tell the young people what they believe and why they believe it. He then addressed the students, telling them on Veterans Day he wants to suggest the students have an obligation to live up to the tradition that has been given to them by those who have served. He said young people have an obligation to use their freedom to be the best they can be.

"Thank you veterans. Thank you for service, thank you for sacrifices, and thank you for the things you have given up for these kids to enjoy their freedom," Bledsoe said.

Blomquist said the reason for the assembly was to honor veterans and to further educate the students.

"We have a lot of kids who have connections with veterans and I think it's important they understand why we are celebrating this and why we are saying thank you to these people. That's what is so cool about this," Blomquist said. "I believe it's our duty as a school and educators to honor these veterans and we have so many wonderful veterans in our community."

Kacie Thrift may be reached at 782-3781 or reporter@cashmerevalleyrecord.com.

Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Passcode: This form will not send your comment unless you copy exactly the passcode seen below into the text field. This is an anti-spam device to help reduce the automated email spam coming through this form.

Please copy the passcode exactly
- it is case sensitive.
Cashmere Valley Bank-online

All content copyright 2007-2016 NCW Media Inc.
Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved