Students honor the red, white and blue |

Students honor the red, white and blue

Record Courier Staff Reports

Gary den Heyer, chairman of Carson Valley Sertoma Club’s Freedom and Heritage Program, is busy wading through written entries from Valley fifth- and sixth-graders on what values the colors of the flag represent and what those values mean to the students.

The Sertomans collected the papers on Feb. 10 and will be picking three winners to be announced Tuesday, on George Washington’s birthday.

The best of the student papers will be forwarded to the Sertoma Regional Convention on April 21. If the paper is again honored at the regional session a student could go all the way to the International Convention in New Orleans in July.

In preparation for this item, I spent a snowy Wednesday morning doing a little research on what the red, white and blue actually mean. After spending a pretty frustrating hour or so, I finally came upon something concrete at

According to these guys, the colors on the flag were in place before anyone thought about their significance. The closest to an official declaration of their meaning is from Charles Thomson, secretary of the Continental Congress, who described the meaning of the colors in the Great Seal.

According to Thomson, the white stood for purity and innocence, red for hardiness and valor and the blue was vigilance, perseverance and justice.

I remember a teacher in grade school telling us that the red stood for the blood shed by the patriots, the white for purity and the blue for freedom. But she might have been the same teacher who said there were seven oceans, something I contradicted her on at the tender age of 8, knowing full well there are seven continents but only four oceans. It’s a wonder I survived.

— n n

Speaking of essays, Jacqui Mobley of Topaz Ranch Estates, brought in a picture of the winners of the Yerington “Patriot’s Pen” essay contest.

Jacqui is the state chairman of the essay contest. The duties of the Yerington Veterans of Foreign Wars post was transferred to Topaz Post No. 3630. We clearly cover Topaz, but we don’t really do much in Yerington. But as a recent arrival from Lyon County it is my pleasure to announce the winners of the conference.

William Snider won first place and $200, Jared Neeley won second place and $150, and Emerald Davis took third place, winning $100. All three are Yerington Middle School children.

The “Patriot’s Pen” essay contest is open to middle schoolers in sixth through eighth grade.

Jacqui has been in the VFW auxiliary since 1992. Her husband Daryl had been All-American All-State commander. At present he works with the Legislature on veterans’ issues.

Paulette Lawless is retiring from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office after 18 years answering the phone.

They will be hosting a farewell celebration at Sharkey’s next week for Paulette.

It was with great sadness we heard of the death of aviator Pete Williams. Pete was killed after being hit by a car in Mojave last week.

I spoke with Pete at the artist’s reception for his neighbor Chris Olesen, who works here at The R-C.

Pete learned to fly in the U.S. Navy at the end of World War II and had been flying ever since.

A guest opinion he wrote appeared in The R-C last month. He has flown self-launching sailplane in Carson Valley for 16 years.

— Kurt Hildebrand is editor of The Record-Courier. Reach him at or 782-5121, ext. 215.