Burlington High School students (from left) Felicity Zelechowski, Trinity Zelechowski, Jenna Pauly, Morgan Hannen and Elizabeth Leon show support for veterans participating in the Old Glory Relay on Monday. (Photo by Jason Arndt)

Students cheer as veterans reroute trip past Burlington High School

By Jason Arndt


Since Sept. 11, when the Old Glory Relay started at Boston’s Fenway Park, thousands of U.S. Veterans have carried the American Flag, with a mission to make it to San Diego by Veterans Day.

The Old Glory Relay squad, known as Team Red, White and Blue, made its arrival into Southeastern Wisconsin on Monday.

As dozens of runners and supporters made their way to Burlington High School – one of the stops on the journey – hundreds of students awaited in anticipation of their arrival.

While the school’s dance and cheer squads shouted encouragement, other students were equally as supportive, showcasing signs of gratitude and appreciation.

The veterans’ arrival, meanwhile, was made possible through the coordinated efforts of the Burlington Student Council, school administrators and Old Glory Relay representatives.

Students take action

Student Council President and senior Morgan Tracy, who learned the group planned to travel through the area, discovered the initial route did not include a direct run alongside Burlington High School.

“What really made it work best is that Morgan contacted the organizers and they altered their routes slightly, so instead of us lining up on Highway 142, which is a safety concern, they came right down McCanna Parkway,” said Principal Eric Burling.

Tracy, meanwhile, said it was imperative to welcome Team RWB members into their campus, considering they served the country and deserved recognition for participating in the coast-to-coast mission.

“We thought it was really important that veterans got recognition for what they do for our country and get the whole school involved,” she said.

With the school community rallying and supporting the veterans, according to Tracy, the coordinated efforts were worth it.

“We are here today and it is really exciting,” she said. “I thought it was incredible, at first, (that) it didn’t actually go right past our school.”

To read the entire story and view additional photos see the Oct. 11 edition of the Burlington Standard Press.