Two hundred veterans gathered in E.E. Delaney Stadium on Monday, November 13, 2017. Greeted by the St. Paul’s cheerleaders, each veteran receive an individualized piece of mail and enjoyed breakfast with one another. The cheerleaders mingled with each of the families to show the thanks they have towards the veterans. “It was truly an honor to be able to take time from our busy schedules to say thank you, in such a minor way, to the people who have served our country,” said cheer coach Jody Wade.
Each student at St. Paul’s is encouraged to invite any veteran they know. Junior cheerleader Coleman Tunipseed was lucky enough to have the opportunity to invite her grandfather. “I look forward to this ceremony every year,” said Lieutenant Colonel Mike Turnipseep.
It is important for cheerleaders to do more than support the athletic teams at their schools. It is equally as important to take time out of their schedules to be members of their communities. Small gestures like the Veterans Day Assembly at St. Paul’s make a big difference. “I’m always blown away by the amount of character you girls have,” one of the veterans in attendance told senior cheerleader Jody Parker. “Your willingness to come out and interact and engage with us veterans means far more than you know.”
Though the assembly was thrown to give thanks to the veterans, the cheerleaders found themselves receive thanks from the veterans. “One of the veterans walked up to me and said ‘Thank you so much.’ It shocked me because he was actually thanking me for doing a small task of holding a sign when he was the veteran. I just responded with ‘No thank you!’”