Students take time between classes to look at a Fallen Heroes Traveling Memorial Wall displaying close to 300 Illinois military personel that have been killed as a result of Operations Iraqu Freedom, Enduring Freedom and New Dawn at West Aurora High School on Thursday, November 8, 2012. | Steven Buyansky~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 8, 2012 8:21PM
The thousands of flags outside West Aurora High School wave in tribute to America’s fallen soldiers.
In honor of Veterans Day, West High is festooned in red, white and blue — with a garrison-sized American flag hanging on the outside of the school along Commonwealth Drive, lit up at night.
Even more noticeable are the 2,100 American flags that were planted in the school’s soccer practice fields on Thursday morning, in preparation for the school’s Veterans Day ceremonies Friday.
Another 246 flags — each one representing an Illinois soldier killed in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq — will accompany the Enduring Freedom Memorial Wall, a travelling memorial featuring the names and photos of those killed.
On Friday, West Aurora will welcome the community to a Veterans Day ceremony featuring speeches from Medal of Honor recipient Sgt. Allen Lynch, and Brigadier Gen. Brian Copes of the Indiana National Guard. The event will also feature performances from the West Aurora a capella choir, the wind symphony and Starlifter, a musical ensemble of the U.S. Air Force, and a sentry from the Illinois Army National Guard.