Students Celebrate Veterans

OHS Castleton students commemorated veteran Michael Weatherall who served in the U.S. Navy before returning home to raise his family in Oceanside. The students hoisted a flag in Mr. Weatherall's honor while two representatives from School #6 presented him with a bouquet of flowers. Previously, the students had flown a flag to recognize John Gracey, Henry Kobbe, Thomas Morreale, Al Sabitino and David Sammartano, who were on hand to receive folded flags from the students. In December, to commemorate Pearl Harbor Day, students will hold the 2nd of four ceremonies that happen each school year.

At OMS, students visited with Korean War veteran Buddy Epstein. In recounting his experiences in Korea, the themes most evident in Mr. Epstein's stories were the terror of war and the love of friends and family that got him through it. "We thought we were a bunch of tough guys," Mr. Epstein said of himself and his buddies. But when they spent their first night in a foxhole, freezing, while the sound of gunfire rent the air, he and his buddy held hands all night long. Mr. Epstein said that his first thought upon awakening was whether his friend had survived the night. Fortunately, he had and they remained lifelong friends. The students were captivated by Mr. Epstein's stories and his warmth.

Below, Stephanie Bragman and her students with Mr. Buddy Epstein

oms students with korean war vet buddy epstein

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