R. Stewart Esten Elementary School’s Annual Memorial Day Observance

1st graders sing “My Country Tis of Thee at the Esten Memorial Day Observance on May 23.

R. Stewart Esten Elementary School held a  Memorial Day Observance on Wednesday, May 23.  Esten’s Memorial Day Celebration is an annual tradition in which the students are taught songs and poems to honor the men and women who defend our freedoms. This tradition was started by the former principal Carol McGrath and she and her husband sponsor Sergeant Dan Clark to come back every year.

Principal Marilyn Smith opened the ceremony and welcomed parents, school and town officials, and veterans who attended.

Mr. Vincent Fountaine, Director of Veteran’s Services gave a brief Memorial Day address.

Sergeant Daniel M. Clark, USMC then acted as Master of Ceremonies, calling upon each grade K-4 to recite Patriotic verses and to sing familiar Patriotic songs.

Mr. Jeffrey Popadic, music teacher, directed the students in each class who sang  “America the Beautiful”, “My Country Tis of Thee”, “You’re a Grand Old Flag”, “This Land is Your Land”, and the “Stars and Stripes Forever”.

Then Sgt. Clark sang the theme songs of each of the Armed Services. He finished the program with a rousing rendition of “Proud to be an American” after Mr. Popadic played “Taps”, the Military Bugle Call.

Principal Smith said, “It is always a privilege to honor the men and women who have served in the Armed Forces. Thank you to Sergeant Dan Clark for leading us in a wonderful ceremony.”

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