Andrews students put on World War I skit on Memorial Day
The show had to go on.
Six Andrews High School students played a huge role in Cherokee County’s annual Memorial Day ceremony Monday morning in Murphy, which was held on time and in its entirety despite a steadily falling rain.
The Wildcats performed skits inspired by World War I, which was being particularly honored on this Memorial Day because of the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day ending the “Great War.”
Hannah McCaw played the role of mother and wife of a soldier headed off to war, played by Jarrod El-Khouri. Their children were portrayed by Malachi Haines and Cole Malin.
In the second skit, a fellow soldier played by Austin Malin came to visit McCaw’s now-widowed character with personal items belonging to her husband. He was accompanied by a nurse played by Mariela Jimenez.
One of the children asked the soldier as he left whether his dad would be remembered in 100 years. The teary-eyed serviceman told the boy it was his hope that he would.
The moving scenes were part of a strongly patriotic ceremony put on by various veterans organizations in the county.
Gerri Winston of Disabled American Veterans was the emcee for the event. She pointed out that while the weather conditions at Monday’s Memorial Day ceremony were not ideal, they were a day at the beach compared to what soldiers in World War I endured every day for years.
McCaw pulled double duty, later playing “Taps” for the military portion of the ceremony.
Veterans of all branches were present to honor the day, as well as family members of those who have been lost:
* Richard Parker and Suzanne Parker were representatives from the family of Saburant Parker, who was killed during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
* Olivia Bragg brought a picture of her uncle – Harold H. Roberts – who died at age 19 during the Battle of Bulge in World War II.
Wreaths were laid at the memorial by the Marine Corps League, American Legion Post 96 and AMVETS of Cherokee County.
Rick and Amy Carter sang “My America, I Love Thee,” a song written by local veteran Oscar Valdez, while Keith Bragg performed “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the beginning of the program.
Winston thanked Lory Pluger for setting up the sound system amid a steady downpour, which carried through preparation time and the ceremony itself.
J.D. Baker, chaplain of the American Legion, gave the opening and closing prayers. He also thanked the attendees for showing patriotism in the face of inclement weather.