Ursus

Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

Leonard Everett Fisher WWII Veteran and author telling student about his service on Friday before Veteran’s Day at an eighth grade classroom.

Evan Trock

Leonard Everett Fisher WWII Veteran and author telling student about his service on Friday before Veteran’s Day at an eighth grade classroom.

Evan Trock, Staff Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






On Nov. 10, Bedford commemorated Veterans Day by having students interact with veterans to learn about their service to our country.

Mrs. Courtney Ruggiero, the eighth grade purple pod social studies teacher, has organized the event for five years. She has a close relationship with many of the veterans so she really cares about this day.

“It is an opportunity for us to take a moment and to recognize the people who dedicate their lives to service,” said Mrs. Ruggiero. “One of the ways to thank them for their service is to learn about them.”

After a welcome breakfast for the veterans, the speakers went to the cafeteria to listen as some 8th grade members of the chamber orchestra played patriotic songs. All of the 29 veterans stood and saluted as they played the “Star Spangled Banner.” The veterans presented to each of the three pods their stories about the wars they fought in and the service they performed.

After they presented, there was a reception in each pod. Some 8th grade band students played taps for the veterans, after which there was cake and fruit to celebrate. The time also gave students a chance to talk with some veterans one on one. Last period of the day students wrote them thank you notes.

The veterans who presented fought in wars as far back as World War II as well as the Korean, Vietnam, Persian Gulf , Afghanistan and Iraqi wars.

It was engaging to hear about their basic training and how difficult their initiation into the military was at the young age of 18 or 20. Their stories told of the mental and physical challenges the men overcame in order to be ready for what lay ahead. Although many of the stories differed, the frequent message was that the military changed their lives forever.

A Marine named Richard Fox grew up dreaming about being in the military, enlisting soon after 9/11. He spoke about how difficult his training was including doing a 54-hour endurance test known as the crucible. He had to learn to work as a team or everyone would be in danger.

Leonard Everett Fisher was one of the older veterans who fought in the army during World War II. He enlisted after finishing college but soon was sent back to learn more about mapmaking. When he was done, he was put on a boat to help navigate to Casablanca. On their way there, they were attacked for 10 minutes by German bombers. Marines were guarding the only way out so they had to stay inside of their quarters.

When he was asked what life was like on the boat, he said “It wasn’t very pleasant. You got two meals a day and you had to stand up. When the boat lurched, all of your food would get on the floor.”
Although that may seem bad, when asked what his favorite parts of the military were, he said, “Being able to see the world and becoming a non-commissioned officer with privileges,” were the best parts.

Mr. Fisher served in the 30th Engineers Topographic Battalion. In this classified operations section of the battalion, he did planning, editing and publishing of the third, fifth and seventh U.S invasions in Italy and France. He served at home, North Africa and Hawaii with this unit.

When Alex Waterworth, an 8th grader in the purple pod, was asked what was the most memorable part of the day, he said, “It was amazing to hear their stories and to get a deeper understanding of the branches of the military and what it was like in the military.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

4 Comments

4 Responses to “Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders”

  1. Ishan Prasad on February 15th, 2018 9:33 am

    This article was well written and was a good summary of the event. It was an honor meeting these veterans. This event is a special opportunity that most children do not have.

    [Reply]

  2. Jack Kiely on February 15th, 2018 2:28 pm

    I agree with Mrs. Ruggiero, and that it is a good idea for veterans to come in and talk with the 8th graders, I only wish that the veterans would also talk with us 6th graders too.

    [Reply]

  3. Tanner Chlupsa on March 6th, 2018 8:39 am

    I think it was amazing that some of our veterans visited our school because it can show how hard they worked for this country and on how inspiring it may be. The one thing that I hoped for was so the veterans would talk with the lower grades to also how amazing they are

    [Reply]

  4. Peter Loranger on March 6th, 2018 12:09 pm

    I believe that this event is extremely beneficial to students, and that it is very important to learn and talk to veterans who served our country. It is great that students at BMS get to experience this program.

    [Reply]

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Bedford PTA Shows its Appreciation For Teachers

  • News

    District Approves Officers

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Blending Test Prep with Curriculum

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Town, Aquarian Agree to New Tank Study

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Those Little Flakes Add up to Big Decisions

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Administrators meet with students

  • News

    Info behind a hashtag

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    New Water Tank Draws Controversy

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Budget Effort to Begin

  • Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders

    News

    Vape: The New Teen Problem

Bedford Middle School's Scholastic News Source
Veterans Visit Enlightens Bedford 8th Graders