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WACS students celebrate Memorial Day with visit by veterans

June 6, 2012
Westfield Republican / Mayville Sentinel News

WESTFIELD - Westfield Elementary School celebrated Memorial Day on Thursday, May 24.

During the monthly morning program, parents, students, teachers and staff were entertained by the Westfield first graders and special guests. The theme for the program was "Giving Thanks to our Military Veterans." First grade teacher Nancy Miller served as Master of Ceremonies and started the program moving with a procession of first grade students waving American flags down the aisles of the auditorium. High school drummer Matt Orlando kept the beat for the marching classes. The audience helped the first grade students with the singing of several patriotic songs.

In keeping with the Memorial Day theme, Miller introduced two WACS alumni, Victor and Joshua Sorrento, who joined the military shortly after graduation. The brothers were both recently stationed overseas in Iraq and Afghanistan with the U.S. Army. Victor Sorrento, a 2003 WACS graduate, shared the history of Memorial Day along with his thoughts on being a current member of the armed forces. He suggested audience members should take a moment to reflect on what Memorial Day really means to them. Sorrento is an Army drill-sergeant who will continue his military duty next month when he prepares for taking on the job of training new cadets.

Article Photos

Submitted photo
First grade students at Westfield Academy and Central School hosted guests Victor and Joshua Sorrento, two brothers who are WACS graduates and members of the military, on Thursday, May 24.

A different message about Memorial Day was given by Victor's brother, Joshua Sorrento, a 2009 Westfield graduate. Joshua Sorrento told the audience a touching personal story of how he was shot while on duty in Iraq. The audience was moved by the first-hand account of Sorrento's casualties and heroism. Sorrento, who was awarded a Purple Heart, reminded everyone of the personal sacrifices all members of the armed forces have given during times of war and peace. He also reminded the audience that Memorial Day is a time to remember fallen soldiers as well as thank current troops for their service in protecting the nation.

"Freedom comes with many sacrifices," Sorrento said.

He was recently medically discharged from the Army and is currently pursuing higher education.

Miller concluded the program with a side-note on her first chat with her former student Joshua, when he came to visit WACS in a wheel chair after being wounded. Miller told the audience how proud she was of both servicemen and thanked them for their ongoing vigilance. Both Sorrento brothers stood in full uniform at the back doors to receive gestures of thanks.



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