Pioneer Heritage Middle School Honors Veterans with Week of Activities

Nov 17, 2014

Flag Raising Ceremony at Pioneer Heritage Middle SchoolMonuments are usually built for large groups of faceless people long gone from memory.

But Pioneer Heritage Middle School spent the week of November 10-14 recognizing Monumental Heroes who are the grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, sons, daughters, brothers and sisters of the PHMS family.

A wall of honor was displayed in the school halls with men and women from all branches of the service and multiple times of deployment. Speakers and events were held throughout the week to honor the service of veterans and educate middle school students about the sacrifices made on their behalf.

Veterans young and old and their families stood outside PHMS on Monday morning as Troop 51 of the Boy Scouts posted the colors before a celebration breakfast. The salutes were crisp and the pledge to flag of the United States just as sincere as it had ever been. Monday that enduring vow was recited at a school flagpole but for many it may have once been said on a Navy ship sailing off the shores of Korea, in the jungles of  Vietnam or in the desert heat of the Middle East – perhaps even during World War II.

Guests of the event were treated to patriotic music from the symphonic band, orchestra and choir. Norma’s Café provided the breakfast buffet, through the assistance of the Parent Teacher Organization.

PHMS students saw just how important honoring veterans is to their principal Rocky Agan in his temperament and actions with visiting vets. His mother and father, who were among the guests, met the day after a handsome young William Agan got out of the Army. But it was the story of Lt. Col. Chris Jackson and Lt. Col. Val Jackson, parents of Elizabeth Jackson, which moved so many.

The Jacksons are both United States Marines – though Chris has recently retired from service. They married and raised their children while juggling their military schedules, assignments and deployments. They, like many, realized life was going to be different after September 11, 2001. Keeping their family together and safe has been a partnership for them as a couple. It also involved trust in the military they served, their own families, and in the schools their children attended. Both were full of praise for the support and help they have received from teachers across the United States as they served their country and protected their children.

“When Elizabeth was in first grade, her teacher, Ms. Carmen, had been in the service. She would let her sit on her lap every day and send an email to Chris,” Val Jackson said.

Both Chris and Val hope they are in Frisco for a good long while. They want it to be their family home as their children grow older.

But if something should happen and the call comes and they, like their fellow marines were called to stand ready, they would go.

And they would know that at home teachers, PTO moms, and neighbors would be there to keep their children safe.

PHMS Vets Breakfast