Honoring Service Returns Nov. 11

Veterans Day Program Planned; Radcliff Signed up to Serve

After the annual Veteran’s Day program was put at a standstill last year due to COVID, for the 2021-2022 school year the in person program will resume for all students and staff.

Starting at 10 a.m. on Thursday, November 21, the colors will be presented to the student body and the public, mask policy being decided at a later date.

Veteran guests will be introduced and recognized, and the Pride of Paoli will play and salute to the Armed Forces. Freshman Mary Cook will be singing a special for our troops, and Senior Chief Sablan will be the main speaker. U.S. history teacher and Veteran’s Day Organizer Chris Lindley will have his advanced U.S. history class introduce the guests and read a piece and a poem in honor of those who have fought for our country.

Lindley has been the coordinator for over a decade, and being able to play a prominent part in this program holds a special place in his heart.

“I organize the Veterans Day program each year for a couple reasons. One, PHS has a long tradition of very well-done programs honoring our veterans that began under former speech and television production teacher Cynthia Webb. When the state began requiring that schools acknowledge the importance of the day in the 1990s, she produced high quality programs that became a source of pride for our school and local veterans. I was fortunate to assist Mrs. Webb in this endeavor for several years. When she retired, she asked me to continue and I agreed.

“The second reason I do these is to bring recognition and honor to a class of men and women who have made significant sacrifices to our nation and continue to offer much support to our community. We can argue that they received wages, training, and money for college and are no different than other Americans. But, they are also asked to make sacrifices that average citizens do not such as deployments, time away from families, and often being placed in harm’s way. Some suffer life-changing disabilities: physical, mental, emotional. In cases of combat experience, they will never be the same people again. For all this, I trust we can spend a little time honoring them.

“Lastly, I do this to remind our students of the cost of freedom and the importance of service to keep a nation strong. These veterans were once young people just like them who made a choice to serve. Their example challenges us to do likewise. Our community and our nation needs our service, and this program does just that as it uses our talents and resources to offer back to these worthy members of our community our gratitude and respect.”

One member of the senior class has already made the commitment to serve after high school.

Senior Gus Radcliff has already made a commitment to serve his country. Radcliff has enlisted in the US Navy, the only senior fully committed to serving in this branch.

“I have always wanted to serve my country and one of the biggest reasons is that I want to see the world while helping others too,” said Radcliff.

In order to become enlisted in the Navy, one must get an ASVAB score of 35 or higher and be mentally and physically healthy enough to meet the high standards of the military.

“I met with my recruiter multiple times before I made my final decision. We had many meetings and discussions about my requirements and qualifications,” said Radcliff.

Radcliff will begin his time in the Navy on June 22, 2022, where he will report to Basic Training at RTC (Recruit Training Command), Great Lakes, Illinois. He will be there for a total of 18 weeks, doing basic as well as specific job training to become an operation specialist.

Although there are other students interested in joining, no one is as fully committed as Radcliff yet.

“If anyone is interested in knowing more about the World’s Greatest Navy, please contact me,” said Radcliff.

Story by Gracie Walls

PHS, At Your Service: Students and staff engage in a day of giving

To most people in a small community, giving back is often crucial. There are not as many larger organizations like those in big cities to help those in need. That is why learning and caring about your neighbor are skills that never go unnoticed, especially in a community like Paoli.

Friday, October 2, all students and faculty at both the high school and junior high will be utilizing the many resources and people at the school to give back to the community and surrounding communities with a school-wide service day. On this day, all classes will be suspended and every student will participate in service opportunities organized and led by the faculty members.

“This is a school-wide effort to help teach the value of service and help meet the needs of our community,” said Principal Todd Hitchcock.

Sign-ups for the activity have been completed and students will learn their placements in the coming days.

One project in the works is a trip to Kosair Children’s Hospital in Louisville. Football coach, Brian Balsmeyer will be taking a group of students to Kosair to assist and visit children who are patients at the hospital.

“I chose this project as a personal reminder of what struggles are in life. Often times, we feel that we’ve got a lot of struggles in our life and sometimes you get an opportunity to see others who are fighting a real struggle. So going to Kosair Children’s Hospital is an opportunity for the kids and myself can think, ‘Oh, we have issues; think again, here are some real issues.’ As for those who are in the hospital, if we can bring some joy to a part of their day or to their whole day, then we are helping them,” said Balsmeyer.

Another project opportunity will be helping the Orange County Historical Society with odd jobs like moving and cleaning. This project will be ran by U.S. history teacher Chris Lindley.

“Obviously, as a history teacher who is also interested in local history, this seemed to be a perfect project. Most members of the Orange County Historical Society are elderly and unable to do much physical work that needs to be done at the museum and Lindley House,” said Lindley. “Not only will the OCHS be helped, but this service project will help prepare the museum and Lindley House to celebrate next year’s bicentennial for Indiana, Orange County and Paoli. Hopefully, a better interpretation of our local area’s history will help our local population and visitors appreciate the part Orange County played in our state’s development.”

When all the students have chosen projects to participate in, everyone will embark to their specific task and carry out the duties chosen by the teacher for the whole day. Students will be asked to do a quick reflection at the end of the day.

Some of these projects have a limit on the number of students and some have a specific set of skills needed. For example, English teacher Tammy Noble will be taking photos of the service day and will be sharing them with the school and community. Four students will spend the day working with cameras and photography skills.

English teacher, Maria Wishart project will also have requirements of the students who will be helping her create, write, illustrate and publish children’s books to be donated to Kosair and Riley Children’s Hospitals and the Ronald McDonald house. For this task, five to ten students with writing, drawing or tech skills will be needed.

“Hopefully this service day will encourage our students to do even more service outside of the school day,” said Hitchcock.

With so many projects being done, a wide variety of people will be greatly helped. Not to mention the great experiences PHS students will gain.

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Story by Garrett Vincent

More Than Meets the Eye: History of common symbols complicated for many

From Issue 6, Published March 13, 2015

More Than Meets the Eye: History of common symbols complicated for many

Each morning, students stand and pledge to a symbol that people around the world understand: The American Flag. The American Flag is a symbol of America, just like the Statue of Liberty, the bald eagle, Uncle Sam and many more. Symbols are a simple way to convey meaning with a simple image. What many people do not realize is over time, the meaning can change. That does not mean they physically change, sometimes just the meanings change. A common symbol with a big meaning is the swastika.
“Swastika was originally an Indian symbol,” said History teacher Chris Lindley. “Even today you’ll see it all around India. It’s an ancient Hindu symbol meaning good luck and prosperity. Whenever Hitler began looking for something to define the Aryans, his master race, he grabbed that symbol and used it for Nazi Germany.”
A lot of people do not know Hitler took the symbol and made his own. Because the symbol is so commonly associated with the Nazi Party, to this day, whenever someone sees Swastika they do not think good or prosperity, they think racism and anti-semitism.
The Confederate Flag and The Swastika both have something in common: a connection to racism.
“The Confederate Flag is another one,” said Lindley. “At one point, it simply represents the Confederacy. Then after the war, it begins to be viewed as nostalgia by some Southerners as part of their history. Then it gets to being used today more as a symbol of racism towards African Americans.”
A lot of students do not understand that the Confederate Flag, also known as Rebel Flag, has a very offensive meaning toward African Americans. The Confederate Flag colors are red, white, blue, with thirteen stars. Sound familiar? The thirteen stars represent the original thirteen colonies from which the United States began. But as time went on, more and more southerner’s adapted the flag and the image was transformed into a sign of “we hate blacks,” when that is not the original message.
Religions have their own symbols and meanings as well.
“For Christians their symbol is the cross,” said Lindley. “For the first two to three centuries it was the fish. The cross was a symbol of Roman execution, which had a very negative meaning to it, which now it has been transferred to having a very strong meaning. For Muslims its the crescent with the little star in it. Jews, star of David. There’s all these different symbols that people use.”
Having a symbol on a piece of paper is one thing. But with that, there are other symbols that everyone will just look by. An example would be gang signs. Such as bandanas hanging out your pockets, the rock and roll sign, “westside,” etc. In some cities, what you wear can determine whether you live or die.
“It’s language in another way,” said Lindley. “A symbol can have one meaning, then I guess you can say hijacked to have a different meaning. But what if someone doesn’t know that language and misuses it? That’s where we get our problems.”
As time goes on, there will be more and more symbols that will transform into meanings that no one could ever imagine.

Story by India Wong