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Continuing to Serve


After years of commitment and service to our country, veterans in our community gave back once again to mentor and assist JUSD students. 

This past February, U.S. veterans from all branches of the armed forces joined Rubidoux High School JROTC students for the school’s second annual Military Interview event. Included were veterans from World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the conflicts in Iraq and the Middle East. The goal of the event was to honor their service as well as to deepen student understanding of the human experiences connected to the U.S. History curriculum.

Veteran shares scrapbookBrett Roble, a U.S. history and government teacher at Rubidoux High, shared, “In U.S. history we talk about big events that shape our country. We study the past in context to understand the present. It is important to make this country and this community, even if it is just a little bit, better every day.”

Mr. Roble coordinated the event along with Air Force JROTC students and Mark McLouth, a retired Air Force Major and Air Force JROTC instructor. Seventy-nine JROTC students and more than forty veterans participated. Also in attendance were Superintendent Elliott Duchon and Board of Education Trustee Linda Chard.

“We owe a debt of gratitude to everyone who served in our armed forces and thank those who are here today to share their experiences with our students,” stated Mr. Duchon.

Linda Chard accepts Father's diplomaMrs. Chard spoke about the Riverside County Office of Education program, “Operation Recognition,” which honors veterans by presenting diplomas to Riverside County residents who missed completing high school due to military service in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or due to internment in WWII Japanese-American relocation camps. Mrs. Chard’s father, who ended his education early to join the Navy and serve his country during World War II, was posthumously awarded his diploma last year. Mrs. Chard attended the ceremony to accept the diploma on his behalf, which was especially meaningful to her because of her work in education.

Speaking on the importance of events such as Rubidoux High School’s, Mrs. Chard shared, “We teach about the wars in our classes, but the kids can’t interact with [the veterans]. [At this event] you’re learning history that’s not going to be written in a history book. It’s a factual history coming from the person who lived it.”

Veteran shares equipmentThroughout the day, veterans shared their experiences, achievement medals, boot camp memories, and photos from when they served across the globe. Military equipment, patches, training manuals, scrapbooks, and food rations were brought to provide further insight into military service. The interviews succeeded in bringing history and valor directly to students.

“This is a great event to get to know veterans,” said Cadet Solis, Honor Commander and RHS student leader of the JROTC cadets. “We get to learn from their experiences and stories that they pass on to us.”

Marissa, a Rubidoux senior and four-year JROTC member at the time of the event, shared what she has learned from JROTC and the military interviews: “I’ve learned self-discipline, respect, honor, and kindness. This program has taught me patriotism and to be grateful even for the little things. It is really because of them. They protect us.”