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Veterans Share Stories With Canton High School Students

Program includes an assembly, classroom visits.

A variety of United States veterans from World War II to the Gulf and Iraq wars shared their stories with Canton High School students Thursday. 

The Veterans Day program was the first of several that will take place in similar fashion at all Canton schools over the next several days. 

The veterans were introduced at a school assembly and then visited classrooms to share their stories and experiences with students. 

"I got shot at every day," said Vietnam veteran Ed Simonds. "Fortunately they were lousy shots." 

Many were not so lucky and the students heard of Prisoner of War experiences and even a few gruesome details of death camps.

Students also heard about the often difficult process of returning home.

Vietnam veteran Carl Heinzelman admitted to his struggles with the bottle upon returning home. He would drink and seek out bars to have someone to talk to, he said. 

"You can talk at a bar but you never talk about the stuff that's bothering you because no one wants to hear it," he said.

Students also heard of the sacrifice veterans were willing to make for their country.

"It was a rash of patriotism." World War II Nay veteran Ben Bowdon said. "Everyone was so mad at the Japanese for the attack on Pearl Harbor."

"It's an honor to serve your country, step up and show your patriotism," added Vietnam veteran Bob Skeels.  

Sophomore Kevin DosSantos volunteered to help with program and said it's great to hear the stories and know that so many volunteered to serve. He said it should be done at all schools, "not only for the veterans but for this kids that want to know what it's like to put yourself out there." 

 

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