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Deployed “Red Tails” share Veterans Day with U.S. school children

  • Published
  • By Maj. John T. Stamm
  • 332d Air Expeditionary Wing

Nine members of the 332d Air Expeditionary Wing 332d Expeditionary Communications Squadron, deployed to an undisclosed location, participated in a video chat with 4th grade students in the United States on Friday, November 9th.

The students were at Westtown Thornbury Elementary School, West Chester Area School District, Pa., and requested the interaction in observance of their Veteran’s Day program.

Maj. Jared King, 332 ECS commander, organized the members’ participation.

“It's something I've done for the past three years, and this time I invited my squadron to participate,” he said. 

King became involved three years ago while he was stationed in Germany.  Ms. Nicole Poulos, a friend of his wife and a reading specialist at the school, reached out and asked if he would talk to one of their classes.  It was so well received he participated again last year while stationed at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. 

“I was attending Air Command and Staff College at the time and a couple of my classmates participated with me,” he said.  “This year I asked for volunteers and had nine people interested.  We broke into three groups of three in order to cover more classrooms and give different perspectives.”

Every year, the students at the school decorate the building head to toe to honor all who served and are serving.  Those who have friends and/or family members in the military fill out an American hero paper and these are hung throughout the whole building.  They also hang the posters of the different branches of the military throughout the building as well.  This year the students also made poppies to honor the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.


Ms. Poulos is very proud of the students and the support the program receives.


“This opportunity for our students to speak with real military personnel and veterans is not only immensely valuable, but absolutely crucial if we are to support students in developing an understanding of and respect for what our armed forces do for our country,” she said.  “I can say whole-heartedly that the Veteran's Day assembly and celebrations are inspiring and life-changing for our students and staff.”


“The kids treat us like heroes and we get to answer questions they have about the military,” King said. “This year it's a little more special because we're calling from a deployed location.”


The 332d Air Expeditionary Wing is the continuing legacy of the famous Tuskegee Airmen of World War II, delivering full-spectrum integrated air and space power, providing agile combat support, developing and empowering innovative Airmen, cultivating relationships with joint and coalition partners, and posturing the wing for enduring strategic presence.