Mineola High School is displaying its first Veteran Flag Field of Honor, hoping it will become a longstanding tradition in the Mineola Union Free School District. More than 140 American flags are waving out front of the high school, each one honoring a man or woman who has served in the United States military.
The Flag Field of Honor is the culmination of several student projects focusing on honoring Long Island veterans. Last year, 11th grade students in Francine Sclafani’s class helped local veteran Bill Urianek collect plastic bottles to be recycled, with the money going toward veteran charities. They also heard from guest speakers, like WWII veteran Bernie Rader.
The now-seniors and Mrs. Sclafani’s current 11th grade students collaborated for the final project, the Flag Field of Honor. They sold flags to friends and family and accepted donations, raising a total of $2,000. The students researched organizations to donate the money to and chose America’s Vet Dogs, based in Smithtown. The national non-profit pairs disabled veterans with service dogs.
Students, staff, America’s Vet Dogs, and Nassau County Executive Laura Curran gathered at the high school for a ceremony on Nov. 12. Students unveiled the Flag Field of Honor and presented the non-profit with a check.
“I am very grateful for Vet Dogs for the work that they do and I understand that fundraising is very challenging right now. The fact that these kids stepped up makes me very optimistic about the future,” said Curran.
The Flag Field of Honor will be on display at Mineola High School until Thanksgiving.
Photo caption 1: The Flag Field of Honor at Mineola High School will be displayed until Thanksgiving.
Photo caption 2: Students presented America’s Vet Dogs with a $1,500 check. An additional $500 was donated, totaling $2,000 for the non-profit.
Photo caption 3: Around 120 students were involved in putting together the Flag Field of Honor. Some of them spoke about the project at the ceremony on Nov. 12.
Photo caption 4: Nassau County Executive Laura Curran expressed her gratitude for the Veteran Field of Flags project and the work Mineola students put into it.
Photo caption 5: America’s Vet Dogs volunteer and dog, Peyton, thanked Mineola High School for its donation, which will help veterans and first responders receive their own service dogs.
Photo caption 6: Mineola High School students played the National Anthem at the start of the ceremony.
Photos courtesy of the Mineola Union Free School District