Veterans Day

Standing, from left, are Fr. Joel Martin, Richard Crabb, US Navy Lieutenant Commander Richard Ritz (Ret.), Dale Woodard, Officer Don Slocumb, Henry Arndt, Tom Kalen, Jack Metrock, John Gissell and Fr. Linus Klucsarits.

St. Bernard students honored their favorite veterans during a Veteran’s Day Ceremony on November 11 in the Abbey Church.

The ceremony began with Mass in at 9:30 a.m. followed by the presentation of Colors by the Honor Guard from the City of Cullman.

Student Council President, Claudia Fallin lead the service with a welcome and the introduction of the guest speaker, who is a grandparent of St. Bernard Prep’s Senior Maggie Holsomback - (Ret.) United State Navy Lieutenant Commander Richard Ritz.

Commander Ritz is a retired Naval Officer with 32 years of service. He held every rank from seaman recruit to Commander, and is the only Naval Officer that made a career teaching Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape to Naval pilots and aircrew man. He was the first Officer in Charge of the Jungle survival school in the Philippines and later the OIC of the cold weather survival school in Brunswick Maine. He also has a lot of experience serving on board the aircraft carrier USS Ranger. Commander Ritz walked us through his entire career covering some very interesting events as well as lessons learned.

After Ritz presentation, St. Bernard Band director, Jonathan Farley, played “Taps” during a moment of silence for all veterans.

Fr. Joel recognized all veterans individually and as a group before the crowd dismissed and headed to the flag pole in front of the Swisher Science Building for the raising of the flag. School Resource Officer, Don Slocumb assisted by Claudia Fallin raised the flag as the St. Bernard Choir sang the “Star Spangled Banner.”

Following the ceremony, a reception was held in the school.

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