WILMINGTON — Clinton County’s patriotism and respect for the men and women who served our country in her time of need was on full display Sunday.The county’s youth and young adults, from middle school to college, used their talents to honor the veterans of World War II, Korea and Vietnam going on the Clinton County Honor Flight.
When most of the 81 local veterans going on Saturday’s Honor Flight, accompanied by their wives and other family members, descended on the Murphy Theatre for the showing of the Academy Award-nominated documentary “Honor Flight”, they were pleasantly surprised to find the lobby of the theater replete with artistic offerings of some the veterans’ photos.
Every veteran who provided a photo will receive a portrait, collage or other artistic rendering created just for them by one of the students, thanks to the art students and their instructors: Jane Taylor, Wilmington Middle School; Ross Tinney, Blanchester Middle School; Lauren Spires, Wilmington High School; Clinton Massie High School; and Hal Shunk of Wilmington College,
Before the movie, Honor Flight Committee Chairman Jack Powell stepped up to the podium and thanked the Murphy Theatre for allowing the committee to use the historic venue to show the movie. He then spoke about how Clinton County Honor Flight began and how, because of the overwhelming support and the generosity of the residents and businesses in the county, the committee’s original goal of raising enough money to sponsor 75 local veterans for an Honor Flight morphed into enough money to sponsor 135 veterans with a total of $58,000 in donations. To start the program, Powell introduced committee members Paul Butler and Richard James for the invocation and Pledge of Allegiance, respectively.
Clinton County Honor Flight Week will culminate with a public send-off on Friday, Sept. 30 beginning at 5:45 p.m. on Walnut Street between Sugartree and Main streets, in front of the Veterans Memorial. Everyone is invited to meet the veterans and show appreciation for the freedoms we enjoy because of their service.
“This patriotic program will be the “Thank You” many of these veterans never received,” the committee stated. “Therefore, the committee requests that as many of the citizens of Clinton County as possible, take an hour to honor these ‘heroes’ for their years of military service.”