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PCHS recognizes local veterans

By Staff
Kim West
PHIL CAMPBELL – The Phil Campbell High School chapter of Future Career and Community Leaders of America sponsored a Veteran's Day program Monday morning that recognized local veterans and featured retired U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Larry Gunderman.
A dozen Franklin County veterans were recognized in a roll call by guidance counselor Wanda Lemay, including Phil Campbell natives James Michael, William H. Halcomb, Ted Williams, Glen Demastus, Billy Wells, Brandon Cothrum, Sammy Taylor, Roger Taylor, Durell Bankston and W.E. Taff, Clure Todd of Spruce Pine and Barry Moore of Russellville.
Principal William Smith opened the program by thanking those who had served with the U.S. military and called them true heroes.
"There's a lot of schools that don't allow (military) recruiters, but they're welcome here," Smith said. "There are a lot of people today who are considered heroes, but my real heroes have always been our military men and women.
"They are special people to me and they have all paid a price for our freedom."
In his keynote address, Gunderman, the father-in-law of FCCLA sponsor Amy Gunderman, compared the service of veterans to writing a blank check.
"It's a great honor for me to be here with all of the veterans today," said Gunderman, a West Point graduate, highly decorated Vietnam veteran and former director of financial aid at Northwest-Shoals Community College. "I think of signing up for the military as writing a blank check payable to your country and worth your life, if necessary.
"Our enemies don't like our freedoms and our way of life but we have great young mwn and women who are serving in our military."