BUTLER TOWNSHIP -- Students at North Schuylkill Junior/Senior High School always look forward to Veterans Day because it gives them a chance to say thank you to the veterans in our area.
"We get a sense of what it was like in the military, and we get a new appreciation towards them and more respect," student Averi Jordan said.
The school hosted its annual Veterans Day assembly on Tuesday. About two dozen veterans attended.
"I've been doing it since I was in the seventh grade," student Michael Russell said. "Every year, you get to listen to these guys tell their stories. Some of them are so amazing. I can't believe that they had to endure what they had to endure."
This program is such a longstanding tradition at the school that everyone Newswatch 16 spoke with couldn't remember exactly how long the school has been hosting it.
One of the veterans at the ceremony was Army veteran Thomas Dando.
"It's really nice because we always think about kids learning about the sacrifices of veterans and without this opportunity they don't sometimes learn," Dando said. "We come here and they provide a program and they honor us."
During the program, Dando and all the other veterans had the opportunity to introduce themselves to the students while a military picture of them was displayed behind them.
"For me, that was 57 years ago," Dando said. "So you go back and the children get to look at you then and now. They might have a different view when they look at an older person when they're walking up a down the street."
The school hosts the program every year to show the students the importance of honoring our veterans because some of them may become veterans themselves one day.
"Well, I think it's very important that all these young kids that are here today see this mainly so that they can understand what these guys had to go through because on the calendar it will just say 'Veterans Day,' but they don't know what that means until they actually see what a veteran is."
Every year, on Memorial Day, the veterans switch roles and host a program for the students.