BROKEN BOW— For those who were born in the early 1990’s, the memory of what happened may be a little fuzzy, but for others, September 11 is a date that will forever be embedded into our minds. Just saying the words, “September 11” or “Patriot Day” brings a pain in our gut and a sadness that cannot be fixed. If you ask anyone that was alive during that time, they will tell you exactly where they were, what they were doing, and how things changed, but what about those that were not even alive during that time?
A large percentage of freshmen, who will be entering college next year, would not have even been born when the United States was attacked. For them, this is a pixelated video on YouTube or pictures in a history book. For others, we lived in that moment of panic, sadness, and fear as we watched the nation we loved fall under attack. When this younger generation learns of this day, what response will they have?
3rd grade teacher at North Park Elementary School in Broken Bow, Katrina Shaw, found out how kids would react when they learned of the events for the first time.
“We watched a video from scholastic news which was very kid friendly and broke it down for them,” said Katrina Shaw. “They had a lot of questions and we had some tears. They were pretty upset on what took place that day.”
Shaw went on to say that, the kids still had a lot of questions as to why it happened, but she wasn’t really able to give them an answer besides there are just some people we have to watch. She said that this is the reason why we have our amazing police, ems/fire, military, nurses, and doctors.
To honor these extremely important members of our community Shaw had the class write letters to the different heroes of the community and then presented the stack of letters to these service members in the North Park Elementary lunch room on Wednesday, September 12.
Representing the different parts of the community were Police Chief Steve Scott, EMS/Fire Coordinator Andy Holland, Firefighter Zeke Atchison, Sgt. Adren Uhlig with the National Guard in Broken Bow, and LPN Tristan Berggren from the Central Nebraska Medical Clinic. After presenting the letters to each of the guests, the kids had the opportunity to ask questions about the different jobs and what it takes to become a police officer, firefighter, EMT, nurse, and become a part of the National Guard.
Shaw talked about how important is was to not only honor these service members, but to also keep history alive in the classroom and learn what shapes our country into what it is today.
“We want to keep history alive. So, we want to make sure we acknowledge the events that have shaped America and I feel that it is key. We have to talk about what happened so [the kids] get a sense of what people went through back then and where we are at now and that making sure we continue to live thorough our history.”