North Middle School students honor veterans by placing flags at cemetery

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COLORADO SPRINGS — Students and teachers at North Middle School honored our veterans today by placing flags at the Fairview Cemetery to pay tribute to those who have served.

“This is special because there are multiple teachers at our school that have served in the different forms of the military so they wanted to bring us out here to honor their fallen comrades,” said 8th grader Ansleigh Groth.

The tradition was started by teacher and veteran, Mrs. Esther Smith.

“As a veteran, I personally would not want to be forgotten, and these veterans here have been, and it’s kind of heartbreaking to know that people who served our country, who died during the war, are forgotten,” said Mrs. Esther Smith.

Mrs. Smith, a retired 1st Class Petty Officer in the US Naval Reserve, is also the reading specialist at North Middle School.

She started the tradition three years ago, and this year they are placing almost 500 flags, including replacing broken and torn flags.

“I teach them honor, dignity, and respect for our service members whether they’re alive or they have passed on so they have a better understanding of what veterans are and what they’ve done for us,” said Smith.

She is also a sponsor to Air Force Academy Cadets, some of which assisted in the project.

“Just working on this project means a lot to me, just helping her out, I know she does a lot so, anything I can do to help, I’m just there for her,” said Air Force Cadet Shadrin Andres.

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