Our Lady of Sorrows kindergarten students led the parochial school’s annual Veterans Day Assembly Friday, with a heart-melting thank you to more than 40 active and former service men and women:
“It’s a very important event for us to honor the people who step up to protect our freedoms,” said Julie McCormick, Director of School Advancement.
The K-8 school, located on Raphael Road in Farmington, created an honor this year, the Guardian Angel Award, which was presented to Ted Klapperich. The World War II infantry medic, who has been a parishioner since 1955, received the Purple Heart and Bronze Star.
McCormick said the award’s name comes from an experience Klapperich had during the war. While helping an injured soldier, he, too, was wounded, but both men were rescued by a mysterious truck that showed up to take them to safety, then disappeared – as though driven by a guardian angel.
During the ceremony, held in the church’s Family Center gymnasium, Fr. Mark Brauer said Klapperich and his wife, Irene, who passed in 2009, sent all four of their children to Our Lady of Sorrows school. In addition, Ted has worked as a teacher, coach, and school principal.
“He has been a long, strong supporter of Catholic education,” Brauer said. “He is also a man of great integrity and courage.”
Students participated in the ceremony with recitations from the Declaration of Independence and Preamble to the Constitution of the United States. The Detroit Catholic Central High School marching band and Our Lady of Sorrows concert and symphony bands also performed.