Anoka County celebrates veterans

Throughout Anoka County, communities said “thank you” this Veterans Day to those who have served their country.

Howard Wilson, a U.S. Army veteran, is presented with a fruit basket by Arlene Wilson, Coon Rapids American Legion Ladies Auxiliary member, during a Veterans Day visit to Park River Estates Care Center, Coon Rapids. Coon Rapids American Legion Ladies Auxiliary members Arlene Wilson (left) and Diane Bohlman (right) greeted Park River Estates Care Center resident Harry Schoen on Veterans Day Monday. Schoen served in the U.S. Army during World War II. Army Sgt. Colleen Schellinger visits kindergarten classes at Park Terrace Elementary School on Veterans Day, her mother Mary Strohmayer’s class among them. Photo by Olivia Koester Kindergartners bombard Sgt. Colleen Schellinger with hugs on Veterans Day. Photo by Olivia Koester Park Terrace kindergartners color thank-you cards for members of the military currently overseas, away from their families. Leftover Halloween candy will accompany the letters. Photo by Olivia Koester The Coon Rapids VFW Post 9625 colorguard presented and retired the colors during a Veterans Day program Monday morning, Nov. 11, at PACT Charter School in Ramsey. Photo by Eric Hagen PACT Charter School students listened intently during the Veterans Day program that included the perspectives of PACT Charter School teacher Deb Lorsung, whose son Joe is in the military and PACT Class of 2006 graduate and U.S. Army veteran Ryan Strickland along with student poems. Photo by Eric Hagen The PACT Charter School band and choir played and sang patriotic music during the Veterans Day program. Photo by Eric Hagen Standing before Adams Elementary School classmates’ original patriotic artwork, Noah Stein reads his Veterans Day essay to assembled students, staff and U.S. military veterans. Photo by Sue Austreng Veterans wave their flags along with patriotic students and staff while singing “You’re a Grand Old Flag” during Adams Elementary School’s Veterans Day assembly. Photo by Sue Austreng Principal Jeremy Tammi introduces Jackson, Alexis and Olivia Smoluch before showing a PowerPoint presentation sent by the students’ step-dad, U.S. Army Spec. Brad Nelson, serving with the 203rd Inland Cargo Transportation Team in Afghanistan. Photo by Sue Austreng U.S. Army National Guard instructor and course manager Robert Cahow talks to Adams Elementary School students during the Veterans Day assembly, telling them that – just like serving in the military – it takes commitment, dedication and perseverance to accomplish the school theme, “Growing in knowledge and going to college.” Photo by Sue Austreng U.S. Marine Corps veteran Cpl. E4 Gary Reimann and Anoka American Legion Auxiliary Unit 102 1st Vice President Cathy Newman sing the National Anthem during Anoka High School’s Veterans Day assembly. Photo by Sue Austreng Maren Weaver addressed assembled Anoka High School classmates, staff and U.S. military veterans, describing the purpose and history of Veterans Day. Photo by Sue Austreng Members of Anoka American Legion Post 102 lay the wreath and salute fallen veterans during the Nov. 11 Veterans Day assembly at Anoka High School. Photo by Sue Austreng U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. David Eustice urges Anoka High School students and staff to thank veterans for their service – and not just on Veterans Day. “We have freedom because people are willing to fight, willing to give up everything so that you can be free,” he said. “You’ll be free next Monday and the Monday after that and all the days after that. You don’t have to save your thanks for Veterans Day. Thanks a veteran next Monday. Thank a veteran the week after that. There’s nothing wrong with being proud to live in the free-est country in the world.” Photo by Sue Austreng Proudly waving the U.S. flag, Hamilton Elementary School students and staff assemble at the flag pole, honoring veterans and thanking them for their service during a Veterans Day event held at the school Monday morning. Photo by Sue Austreng Hamilton Hurricane Helpers raise the flags while classmates, teachers and veterans witness the Veterans Day event. Photo by Sue Austreng The flag is anchored while veterans salute Old Glory. Photo by Sue Austreng Hamilton Elementary School students and staff take a memorial lap around the track, walking in silence in honor of U.S. soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines who have given the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country. Photo by Sue Austreng Coon Rapids VFW members Bob Gullickson (front left) and Michael Stanton (back left) greeted Howard Dahlin (back right) and Emile Bernier (seated right) when members of the Coon Rapids VFW and Ladies Auxiliary visited with veterans at the Volunteers of America Homestead of Coon Rapids on Veterans Day Monday. Val Stanton (left), Coon Rapids VFW Ladies Auxiliary, presents Jerry Neenan, Volunteers of America Homestead of Coon Rapids resident and veteran, with a gift bag on Veterans Day.
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U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. David Eustice urges Anoka High School students and staff to thank veterans for their service – and not just on Veterans Day. “We have freedom because people are willing to fight, willing to give up everything so that you can be free,” he said. “You’ll be free next Monday and the Monday after that and all the days after that. You don’t have to save your thanks for Veterans Day. Thanks a veteran next Monday. Thank a veteran the week after that. There’s nothing wrong with being proud to live in the free-est country in the world.” Photo by Sue Austreng

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