The new flag raised as the old was retired at the Veterans Day assembly on Thursday, November 12 at Shoshone-Bannock Jr./Sr. High School Thursday, November 12.
By DANA HERNANDEZ
FORT HALL — Shoshone-Bannock Jr./Sr. High School (SBHS) had a Veterans Day and flag assembly on Thursday, November 12 at the school.
Dean of Students Pamela Davis was the coordinator and said she wanted to honor the veterans as well as introduce the new flag. “So far the school has been through four flags since I’ve been here, so this is flag number five for the school.”
Veterans present were SBHS alumni’s Marci Dawes Flores, U.S. Navy and Sammy Matsaw, U.S. Army. SBHS employees, Edrick Auck Jr. who served in the U.S. Army, and Ernest Wahtomy who served in the Marine Corps. Also honored was Sergeant Tyler Schrock who served in the Marine Corps and Darrel Archuleta who served in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. Not present for the veteran honoring was SBHS employee, Hank Edmo-McArthur.
The emcee was Rose Ann Abrahamson and veterans in attendance were acknowledged and gifted items by Pamela Davis and students. Veterans each gave words of encouragement to the students, and afterwards, veterans and students went outside to watch the retired U.S. flag be replaced by the new one.
Students from SBHS gifted the veterans with dried meat and chokecherries and Abrahamson explained the significance of the gifts that were given and also referred to them in Shoshoni. Veteran Marci Dawes Flores was acknowledged for her service in the U.S. Navy. Dawes-Flores was the SBHS class president in 1998 and said that once she graduated she knew she wasn’t yet ready for college, so she enlisted in the Navy. She was sent to boot camp and then later to Okinawa, Japan where she lived and served for two years. Later, she moved to San Diego, Calif. where she served two years there. She learned a lot of different career paths while serving her country. She attended Idaho State University, became a paralegal, and now works for the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes.
Sammy Matsaw also graduated from Shoshone-Bannock High School and went on to receive his Ph.D. While in the service he spent time in Germany, Kosovo, and Iraq. Matsaw said he had a setback while in the military and was injured, so he enrolled in the National Guard and school. He received his Master and Doctorate degrees and also worked for the Fish and Wildlife department for the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes. “I’ve had a lot of transitions, but it all started here, my heart, home and family are here,” said Matsaw.
SBHS employee, Edrick Auck Jr. said he remembers SBHS when it was an alternative school and when Pamela first started. Auck said when he graduated he didn’t know what to do, he was lost and said he needed structure, so he decided to enlist in the Army. “We didn’t have SBHS like it is now, so I get to come to work every day to see all you kids, and make it a point to say hello and talk to everyone,” said Auck.
Veteran Edrick Auck Jr. speaks to students at the assembly.
Fort Hall Police Officer Tyler Schrock was also recognized by Pamela Davis for his service in the Marines. Schrock said he was unsure about what to do once he graduated high school, but once his friend, Phillip Baldwin asked him to join the Marines, he was committed to doing something besides sitting at home. Schrock said when his service was up, he knew home was something he thought about and knew that he wanted to return and serve. He eventually accepted a position as a school resource officer for the Fort Hall Police Department.
Tribal member, Darrel Archuleta said when he was growing up he was a bad kid. He wanted to enlist in the Army, but didn’t want to tell his mother, so he had to trick her into signing his papers. Once he was in, Archuleta said he went to New Jersey, then Panama for jungle training, and then to Vietnam. He said the Vietnam central highlands reminded him a lot of Idaho and that the only thing that was different were the snakes because most were poisonous. When Archuleta completed his time in the service, he worked, volunteered and trained at the Fire Department. Archuleta told the SBHS students that they have a chance that he never had, and that is to get a high school diploma. He said it took him over 30 years to get his GED.
Retired SBHS employee, Ernest Wahtomy thanked all the students who were present and said that he was proud of them and has seen a lot of changes and growth in them and in the school over the past years.
Veterans display table at the assembly.