Students commemorate local heroes

By Karen Colbenson

Post-Bulletin, Austin MN

Third-grader Breanna Anderson is mighty proud of her grandfather today.

"He helped the world," said Breanna, a student at Southgate Elementary School, where soldiers — the young and the seasoned — were honored at a Veterans Day breakfast this morning.

Gene Seavey, 77, of Austin, has a combined 27 years of service in the Navy and National Guard. He said when he looks back on those years, he feels a sense of pride and gratitude.


"I look back on it … and I saw an awful lot of country," said Seavey.

While serving as a machinist mate in the Navy during the Korean War from 1951 to 1954, Seavey traveled through Europe, Cuba, Scotland, France and Ireland.

"It gave me a chance to see the world," said Seavey.

He later would join the National Guard with a friend from work.

Breanna said every year she brings her grandfather to Austin Public Schools’ traditional Veterans Day breakfast because she wants to celebrate his contributions to the world.

"I’ve brought him here in first, second and third grade now," she said.

Seavey said it is nice to be recognized.

"A lot of people don’t understand," said Seavey. "They protest this and protest that. We’ve got to stop and realize the importance of what is happening, what we are doing to help the world."


Veterans know the reasons for war, said Seavey, with tears in his eyes.

Ken Schaub, 69, a veteran of the Korean and Vietnam wars said he will never forget the letter he received drafting him into the Korean War.

"Greetings from your president. Your friends and family have chosen you to serve for them," the letter began.

Schaub called his time serving in intelligence during the war "an extraordinary experience."

"It broadens your horizons by a long way," said Schaub.

Schaub was joined for breakfast by his grandson Karter, a fourth-grader at Southgate.

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