Thursday, November 11, 2010
Guest Blog: Ms. Sims Remembers a Great Veteran
Hope you enjoyed your day off, middle school students. I spent my day visiting charter schools (which hold classes on Veterans Day) and getting ideas about how to better teach social studies. At the end of the day, I learned a lot, but--honestly--I didn't meet any students who were smarter than you all, nor did I once wish I were working at any other school besides ours. CCAA is a great place to teach and I hope you find it a great place to learn, because I love seeing you all learn.
More important than how we spent our day, though, was why we had a holiday in the first place. Today is Veterans Day. It was once called Armistice Day in the USA, it's called Remembrance Day in Canada and Great Britain, and it originally commemorated World War I's conclusion--which occurred on November 11, 1918. Today, we use the day to honor all military veterans. I asked my Facebook friends to write guest posts in honor of their most admired veterans, and Ms. Sims wrote this about her father:
The veteran I always think of and thank on Veterans Day is my father. He served in the US Army for 20 years as a helicopter pilot and was on active duty in Vietnam. He was a reconnaissance pilot, so his job was to fly in and drop off/pick up soldiers who were fighting in the field. If I had to count on someone to pluck me out of a dangerous situation, I would want that person to be my dad. He was the smartest person I've ever known, both intellectually and sensibly.
My dad died ten years ago, but I think about him a lot and am really grateful for the lessons he taught me. To name just one: he was a truly independent thinker and taught me the value of critical questioning and forming my own opinion about things. It probably wasn't always easy for him to be so critical, because the Armed Services have a very strict chain of command that requires that soldiers follow the orders of their superiors. I know my dad didn't always agree with the orders he was given, just like he didn't always agree with decisions that I made in my life, but he was always respectful of them.
I'm grateful to all veterans of the US Armed Forces for the sacrifices they made to serve our country. Thanks for letting me share about my favorite soldier and my hero, my father.