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story.lead_photo.caption Pea Ridge Ridgetones sang "Dona Nobis Pacem (Give us Peace)" and "Dannny Boy" for veterans and students Friday.

"Do you serve others?

"Do you treat everyone with dignity even in disagreement?

"Do you do what is right even if it will affect you?

"My service is worth every minute when I see young people living out these values..."

"Want to know how you can honor a veteran?

"Wake up every day and be the best you that you can be no matter what you feel like.

"Commit to something outside of yourself that improves the world around you," Larry Mathis, guest speaker, advised Pea Ridge High School students. "With the freedoms we enjoy in this county comes a responsibility. Never take those freedoms for granted."

"I would like my service to enable you to help others!"

Speaking at the Veterans Day assembly Friday, Mathis, choking up with emotion, said last year's speaker was a World War II veteran and he was both intimidated and humbled by the honor to speak.

"They're heroes. They're patriots," he said. "They answer the call to something higher than them."

He said veterans in his family, including his father, brother, uncles and grandfather, set the example of service to the USA.

"These men inspired me," he said.

"I don't think there's anything special about my service," he said. "There are so many more who gave so much more than me.... I got up every day, went to work and gave it my all. It's nothing more than that."

Mathis, a 1998 graduate of Clearwater High School of Piedmont, Mo., attended the Navy Advanced Electronics and Computer training pipeline after basic training. He maintained an air station radar system and communication equipment at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash., and then served on the USS Thomas S. Gates. He served on two deployments circumnavigating South America once.

The grand marshal of the Saturday Veterans Day Parade -- Howard Schuettpelz -- was recognized by Chris Snow.

The ceremony was hosted by the PRHS Student Council. Master of ceremonies was Robby Pickthall. Trevor Henry presented the invocation and Schelby Pruitt presented the benediction. The Pea Ridge Band played "Star Spangled Banner," "March of the Armed Forces" and "Salvation is Created" under the direction of band director Kevin Hume.

The assembly was first hosted by PRHS in the early 1990s and has continued as a tradition to honor veterans for the past decade.

The Pea Ridge Intermediate School Select Choir, under the direction of Mrs. April Smith, performed "Proud of Our Veterans," "Still in My Heart" and "All American You and Me."

Tate Christensen, ninth grade, and Aden Christenson, 10th grade, members of Boys Scouts of America Troop 293, posted the colors -- the American and Arkansas flags.

Community on 11/15/2017

Print Headline: Students honor veterans

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