Flags Honoring America dedication program in Wall
Wed, 08/30/2017 - 9:16am admin
Del Bartels/Pioneer Review
A program dedicating Wall School District’s new outdoor athletic complex and honoring veterans was held preceeding the home high school football game, Friday, Aug. 25.
“Flags Honoring America” included approximately 40 volunteers holding over their heads a huge American flag on the football field before the game. Displayed in front of the U.S. flag was a slightly smaller South Dakota flag.
Surrounding the complex were the 50 state flags. At the east end of the field were displayed the six military flags – Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine, Coast Guard and POW/MIA. The Wall football and volleyball players had put up the 163 red, white and blue buntings which lined the fence around the complex.
Wall School Board President Scot Eisenbraun and Superintendent Cooper Garnos welcomed the audience members.
Garnos summarized the idea and construction of the athletic complex. “You start second guessing yourself about really needing all that space. But the community realized we do need it. When you work hard for something, you appreciate it more,” said Garnos. He emphasized that the complex is for the community, and people who walk and jog should use the track.
Barriers keep motorized vehicles from the football field and track, but people can walk right through. A fund exists to upkeep the astro turf and all-weather track covering, in approximately 20 years. But, the facility should be a tribute to the community for many, many years beyond that.
An instrumental presentation of “America the Beautiful” was played by students Regan Simons and Keaunna Poor Bear.
A proclamation from South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard was read. It declared the event as Wall Area Athletic Complex Day, stating that the complex will be a positive, enduring legacy for generations to come. Another proclamation was presented by Wall Mayor Marty Huether declaring the event Wall Eagle Day.
In attendance were South Dakota High School Activities Association President Dan Swartos and Executive Director John Krogstad.
A special recognition of veterans requested all attending United States military veterans to stand so the rest of the audience could recognize and honor them with applause. “Make the chance to say thank you. Pat them on the back, shake their hand. If it were not for our veterans’ sacrifice and service, we would not have the freedoms that we enjoy in America,” said Garnos.
Garnos thanked the veterans, the rest of the audience, other community members and business that assisted with sponsoring the Flags Honoring America program. This and similar programs are assisted by Flags Honoring America, a Sioux Falls company that specifically honors veterans and the national, state and military flags.
The “Star Spangled Banner” was sung by student Sierra Wilson.
Eisenbraun and Huether shared in the official ribbon cutting of the athletic complex. Ground was broken on the major project three years ago.