By Richard Taylor, USAF veteran

After a two-year absence due to Hurricane Dorian and the COVID-19 pandemic, Ocracoke School resumes its traditional Veterans Day and honor roll awards ceremony next Monday (Nov. 15) at 8:15 a.m. in the newly refurbished school gym.

Everyone is welcome to attend and must wear masks.

The actual observance of Veterans Day this year on Thursday (Nov. 11) is a teacher workday. So the ceremony was originally scheduled for Nov. 9. However, flooded streets in the village from Sunday’s coastal storm and the cancellation of school Monday, prompted Principal Leslie Cole to reschedule the ceremony to Nov. 15.

One year after World War I hostilities ended on the 11th hour of the 11th day of November 1918, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed that day be dedicated to world peace and thereafter celebrated as “Armistice Day.” In May 1938, Congress made Nov. 11 a legal holiday, primarily to honor World War I veterans.

Following World War II and the Korean War, Congress changed the name to Veterans Day in June 1954 to honor American veterans of all wars. The name now commemorates all veterans, whether they served during in wars or peacetime.

In a long-standing Ocracoke tradition, students will present veterans with handmade “Thank you for your service” cards, as Cole reads the name of each island veteran in attendance.

Honor roll awards also will be presented for the fall grading-period to students in grades 3 to12. Categories include Principal’s List (all As), A/B honor roll (85-100 average) and teacher’s choice Dolphin Awards.

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