Neillsville students gathered Friday morning to honor both two- and four-footed veterans.
"This is one of the few chances we get to see all 1,000 students in the same place at the same time," Elementary/Middle School principal Tim Rueth said, "it must be a special day when we get to do that."
"Veterans Day is intended to honor and thank all of those who served honorably in our military...in war-time and in peace-time," Rueth explained.
The high school band played several patriotic songs and students and staff stood as the Neillsville American Legion/VFW color guard presented the colors.
Rueth introduced Don Simpson, Neillsville, a veteran of the Vietnam War who described his time in the southeastern Asian jungle. The story led to another speaker, Amy Peck, a daughter of a Vietnam veteran and a support dog specialist.
Peck, appeared alongside her dog "Freckles," and told students that “man’s best friend” has also been a friend on the field of battle. Their involvement in American wars dates back to WWI and continued in WWII and Vietnam.
"Scout dogs were trained to silently locate improvised explosive devices, tunnels, tripwires, ambushes and snipers," Peck said. "They could also locate enemy fighters hidden underwater with only reed breathing-straws above the waterline."
Peck said dogs have also helped American soldiers recover from war.
Freckles is a therapy dog who comforts veterans at the Tomah Veterans Hospital.
"She makes her rounds visiting each room. She brings back happy memories to the veterans of their own dogs," she described.