Custer, S.D. —The Custer School District held it’s 26th annual Veterans Day program at Veterans Memorial Park.
While some things were different this year, what didn’t change was the community’s appreciation for those who served. The program is organized by the Custer High School student council, the local American Legion, and the VFW. It’s usually held in the armory, but was moved this year to the veterans memorial park. Despite the cold temperatures, the community appreciated being able to say thank you.
“I think our community looks forward to it, I know our school looks forward to it,” Sandy Arsenault, the Student Council Director.
“Thank you, to all the veterans for their service,” said Heidi Moore, the Custer High School student body president. “And it just means so much to all of us, and we really appreciate you and all you’ve done.”
Part of the ceremony included a video tribute to veterans who passed in the last year, as well as a rifle salute and the playing of Taps. Civil Air Patrol member and student, Preston Drew, read a statement from South Dakota secretary of veterans affairs, Greg Whitlock. He urged the community to find ways to give back to veterans. As for vets in attendance, they appreciated the ongoing support they receive from the community.
“Custer community, both the city and the county is extremely patriotic here, and the school kids reflect that,” said Americanism Officer of the local American Legion, Mark Mills.
“It’s special, here in Custer particularly where you have a small town feeling,” said Navy veteran Robert McWhorter. “Everybody’s involved, and it’s kind of a cool day, and it was a little bit nippy, but very worthwhile.”
Along Custer’s main streets, American flags were mounted on light poles, as well as 40 posters honoring Custer’s hometown heroes. Red roses were also given to veterans, one for themselves, and additional roses in honor of those they lost during their service. Custer High School also created a Veterans day 2020 memorial video to accompany the ceremony.