Westmont, Illinois -- Date Issued: November 11, 2021
On Veterans Day, Thursday, November 11, 2021, Westmont High School hosted a presentation at which the entire school was able to hear from several veterans who talked about the importance of supporting our veterans and currently serving troops. The guest speakers also specifically honored several individuals for their service to the country. More than a dozen veterans were in attendance for the presentation.
During the presentation given by Hal Burke, a Navy Veteran and veteran advocate, he talked about former Westmont resident James Robinson, who sacrificed his life to save others during a battle in Vietnam. Robinson posthumously received the Congressional Medal of Honor. Burke also recognized a veteran who was in attendance, Marcel Levesque. During World War II, Levesque served in the Navy aboard the aircraft carrier Bunker Hill, which was hit by two Japanese kamikaze attacks. John Jonak, a CUSD 201 Administrator and retired Army Sergeant, who served in Afghanistan, talked about the importance of the support he received from his family, friends, work colleagues, and community while he was serving overseas.
U.S. Army officers and recruiters Capt. Crum and Sgt. Pike attended the event and talked to the students about the importance of being dedicated to having a great life through a commitment to excellence. The U.S. Army officers then honored Principal Jack Baldermann and Westmont High School with the U.S. Army Award of Excellence for their 2021 National Blue Ribbon Award.
Principal Baldermann thanked the guest speakers and veterans in attendance. Baldermann gave special mention to American Legion Post 338 Commander Frank Trout for his assistance with coordinating the event as well as creating an essay contest for students to share their thoughts about Veterans Day. WHS students John Naom and Defne Barkan were recognized for their essay entries in the contest.
Photos from the event can be found in the Village of Westmont Photo Gallery.
Contact: Larry McIntyre
Village of Westmont
Communications Director/Public Information Officer