Elementary school honors veterans with hallway of heroes

By  | 

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Veterans Day is November 11 and it honors all those who have served in the military, but one school is also honoring veterans' families too.

Prairie Hill Elementary in Cedar Rapids at College Community School District started the veterans wall known as "the Hallway of Heroes" three years ago.

They send home cards with faculty and students to write down information about a family member who served or currently serves in the military.

For some like fourth-grade teacher Jill Novotny, this wall holds a special meaning.

Novotny's husband is in the Army Reserve and deployed to Afghanistan back in 2012.

Now he spends one weekend each month away from home for training.

"The big thing with the Army Reserves is that you know its one weekend a month two weeks a year, but he's gone way more than that for training and for getting promoted and different schools that they send them too," says Novotny.

Being away from husbands, wives, and children is all part of the job.

And this Veterans Day Kids like Junior Boxa are learning how their family members have to make those same sacrifices.

"This is my dad, he was in the Navy and he served for six years...in this one he was on a boat, he's working hard so he's sleeping," says Junior Boxa, a third grader at Prairie Hill Elementary, as he points to a picture of his father on the wall.

Novotny's wants anyone who walks through these halls to stop and think about the soldiers who have to spend time away from their families and the family members who miss them.

"I can't imagine services members that have kids, we just had our first and I can't imagine him being gone and missing all of his first and those things, but that's you know the reality for a lot of families, missing you know those important milestones of their kids and things like that," says Novotny.

The staff at Prairie Hill Elementary School started working on this project at the end of October and they finished the first week of November.

And they've already collected and posted over 50 pictures of veterans on this wall.