Idaho County is second to none in how it honors and recognizes its veterans; not just on holidays, but every day.
It’s easy to be reminded of this during commemorative events, such as Veterans’ Day.
Sunday saw an impressive turnout by White Bird with more than 100 people attending its community’s commemoration of its veterans, and the recently completed memorial park. On that last, it is an impressive, professionally constructed facility that is the region’s new gem for public parks. When completed, it will definitely be a fantastic welcome at the entrance of town, and a strong statement of how this community sees the contributions of its veterans.
Local schools do a fabulous job of honoring veterans and reminding students of the sacrifices. Grangeville High School has an especially well-run Veterans Day program, the highlight of which is a “human tunnel” made by the students at the end of the assembly. Veterans walk through as the band plays military songs and students high-five, shake hands with and hug veterans, thanking them for their service. It’s an upbeat way to end an assembly, and the faces of both the kids and the veterans as they walk through that tunnel are priceless.
A variety of local eateries offered free or discounted meals to veterans during the past week, including Cottonwood’s The Hangout. Ron and Debbie Schnider never want any fanfare for themselves, but humbly ask the meal be noted in the paper each year so they can get the word out for all veterans to stop in and have a meal and visit.
In Idaho County alone, 375 Quilts of Valor have been handmade and distributed since 2010. This organization of local women volunteer all their time and skills with community-donated materials. All for the veterans we know, love and respect.
And who could forget the volunteer hours given, through all sorts of weather, to place the American flag in our towns? From the Main Street of Grangeville to the cemetery in Kamiah, flags fly as a reminder of those we honor for their service to our country.
It doesn’t take a red-letter day on the calendar for Idaho County to honor its veterans.