Evergreen to host living history week
The Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum will host a weeklong tribute to veterans Monday through Friday, Nov. 5 through 9. Veterans from World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War will speak to students from 18 area high schools and colleges.
Local veterans are welcome to attend the daily presentations, which run from about 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the space museum, said Ken Buckles, veteran and military outreach coordinator at Evergreen. Lunch costs $5.
The museum also will host a dinner honoring prisoners of war at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 5. Tickets are $15 for museum members and $25 for the general public.
Living History Week is an expansion of the Remembering America’s Heroes Living History Day the museum has hosted for several years for McMinnville High School juniors.
Remembering America’s Heroes’ goal is to provide “education to youth and the community so they can understand and appreciate the value and cost of freedom.”
Buckles, son of a Korean War veteran, started the living history events when he was a teacher and coach at Milwaukie High School. It became Remembering America’s Heroes in 2001 and began bringing veterans from all over the state and national visitors, as well, to one-day events at various sites.
This year, the vets will stay and speak for an entire week — the only week of its kind in the U.S., Buckles said.
More than two dozen veterans will be involved, including a Navajo code talker, Tuskegee airmen, survivors of Pearl Harbor and the Bataan Death March and others.
They will speak with small groups of students in classrooms and at lunch. Students will see military memorabilia and artifacts in the museums. And each day will culminate with an Assembly of Honor, resembling a USO show, with musical performances and special recognition for veterans.
All seven Yamhill County high schools will send students to Living History Week. Other participating schools are Gervais, Roosevelt, Reynolds, Jefferson, David Douglas, North Salem, Oregon City and McNary high schools; Horizon Christian School; Chemeketa Community College and Linfield College.
Buckles, who spoke at the McMinnville Band of Brothers meeting Thursday, said he’s been visiting all the schools in advance of Living History Week.
In addition to inviting students to attend the program, he’s been encouraging the boys to wear shirts and ties and the girls to wear dresses to show respect for the veterans.
A few students have grumbled about going, the former teacher said. He’s told them they have the right to complain and otherwise speak their mind because they enjoy the freedoms for which veterans have fought and died.
For more information or to make a contribution, contact Buckles at 503-434-4185 or firstname.lastname@example.org.