Veterans Day is a day of consideration and gratitude, which is what Pierce College students wanted to express to the community through the Veterans Wall of Honor on campus.
The Veterans’ Wall of Honor started as a simple idea while student leaders were planning events for fall quarter. The leaders decided to do something special for Veterans Day and Diversity Coordinator Arsenio Lopez III brainstormed the Veterans Wall of Honor.
The Wall of Honor, a blank piece of banner-size paper, was hung on the wall near the Connection Cafe on Nov. 5. Students were invited to write comments on the paper. It came down on Nov. 9 with hardly any more room for writing. The Wall of Honor was delivered on Nov. 11 to the Washington Soldiers Home, a nursing home in Orting.
“The more we processed it, the more we thought of what to do with it when it was done,” said Bhagirath Bhatt, vice president for government concerns. “It’s great to have students participate in honoring veterans, but it became more memorable to take it to the Soldiers Home. The veterans don’t hear appreciation for their service as often as they should.”
The Soldiers Home was established in 1891 and was the first of three homes built for Washington state veterans. It’s not only a home for veterans, but also veteran dependents.
“The Veterans’ Wall of Honor started out simple, but it had a huge impact,” Bhatt said.
Some student leaders participated in a Veterans Day event at the Soldiers Home as the signed poster was presented during the ceremony. Bhatt, who is a veteran, was included in the program at the event and spoke. Lopez explained the meaning of the Veterans’ Wall of Honor near the end of the event.
The Soldiers Home officials plan to frame the poster and hang it in a place of distinction.
“I would like to see this become a tradition of Pierce College,” Bhatt said. “Hopefully next year someone will pick up the banner and continue to make it bigger and better.”
Students agree that this was a memorable event.
“I really liked this event, and I love how they dressed up the area around the wall to make it special,” student Kiana-lyn Arceo said. “I am thankful for everything veterans have done for us.”
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