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Middletown Area Middle School honors those who served for Veterans Day

By Laura Hayes

laurahayes@pressandjournal.com

717-944-4628
Posted 11/14/18

Middletown Area Middle School honored veterans at its annual Veterans Appreciation Ceremony on Nov. 9.

During the event, the band and color guard performed. Three students read essays on why they …

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Middletown Area Middle School honors those who served for Veterans Day

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Middletown Area Middle School honored veterans at its annual Veterans Appreciation Ceremony on Nov. 9.

During the event, the band and color guard performed. Three students read essays on why they honor the American flag.

Sixth-grader Aman Azim said the flag represented the blood, sweat and tears to raise the United States.

“By honoring the American flag, we show respect to every race, religion and gender who sacrifice their lives for the freedom of this nation,” Azim said. “Many wars are fought. Many lives are lost, but at the end, this flag is what unites us.”

All veterans were recognized, but the ceremony paid a special tribute to Vietnam War veterans, showing CBS footage of the war from 1970.

The guest speaker was Lou Braasch, who has lived in Lower Swatara since 1976 and had a 45-year career in radio. He is better known as Dan Steele.

Braasch is a Navy veteran and served during the Vietnam War. After failing his physical to enlist in the Marine Corps, Braasch enlisted in the Navy.

“My twin brother Larry and I were raised to believe that serving your country to defend the freedom we enjoy was the honorable thing to do,” he said.

Braasch served on the aircraft carrier the USS Forrestal as an aircraft hydraulic mechanic and a crewman on a C-1A cargo plane.

He was onboard the Forrestal during the 1967 fire which killed 134 of his shipmates and injured 161.

Braasch said the fire affected him for the rest of his life.