, Port Arthur, Texas


June 15, 2011

Central Middle School students visit Washington, D.C.

NEDERLAND — Forty seven students from Central Middle School in Nederland got to have the honor of visiting Washington, D.C., from June 7-10.

The sponsor of the organization is Candice Haggard.  She and her husband, Randy Haggard, have been taking students to see Washington, D.C. for 25 years.  The other chaperones were Catherine Hillsten, Lacy Benoit and Leah Shoemaker.

This was a really fast-paced trip for these young Texans.  Every morning they were dressed and eating breakfast at 6:30 a.m. and then off to make memories.

Some of the unforgettable places they visited were the incredible World War II Memorial honoring over 400,000 men and women who died for our country, the unbelievable memorials to Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln, the memorials honoring the bravery shown at Iwo Jima and in the Korean War, the captivating Smithsonian Museums and the Vietnam Wall of over 58,000 names of those who died or are still missing from action from that fifteen year battle.  Other exciting sights included a guided tour through the home of George and Martha Washington, Mount Vernon, with its ten bedrooms and beautiful view of the Potomac River, the famous 45 carat Hope diamond, the 555 foot tall Washington Monument as well as a personal tours of the beautiful United States Capitol building, the Library of Congress and the White House.

The highlight of the entire fabulous trip took place in the Arlington National Cemetery where two students, Jamie Matise and Chase Hughes, laid a wreath representing Central Middle School on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  The students were amazed when they saw over 270,000 graves including John and Jacqueline Kennedy, Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier of World War II, the memorial to the spaceship Challenger and watching the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  It was such a beautiful, emotional moment as everyone stood completely silent and listened to Taps being played for them.  It was a moment they will cherish forever!

Those attending were:  Carrington Barfield, Stefanie Boudreaux, Jessica Braquet, Mason Bridges, Micah Carter, Christa Crain, Andrew Do, Kellie Duhon, Ashley Emfinger, Austin Franklin, Vanessa Guerrero, Chambre Guin, Brennah Hairston, Riki Hardy, Jordan Heidenrich, Katie Hoang, Chase Hughes, Haylie Kelley, Jaycie Kemp, Shelby Kuhn, Samantha Lindsay, Ali Maredia, Jamie Matise, Kendall McCorvy, Mason McCorvy, Maria Mejia, Isaac Mendoza, Colton Minter, Ashlyn Mitchell, Devan Mitchell, Asim Momin, Emily Morton, Kaylee Orr, Christan Pipes, Lauren Pontiff, Robert Prestridge, Jackson Provost, Katie Quinn, Jacob Ramagos, Caroline Richardson, Christopher Sherman, Kevin Vandevender, Cole Villafano, Carla Warren, Shalina Wells, Reid Whaley and Kenzie Zapotoschny.

"I want to thank all the wonderful families of these students for letting their children go on this once-in-a-lifetime educational trip to see our beautiful capital, Washington, D.C.," Mrs. Haggard said.

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