Students Lay Wreath At Tomb of Unknowns

September 01, 2011 | Byron Fesler

Recently 24 students and adults from four Idaho Conference elementary schools took a two-week school fieldtrip to Washington, D.C., from March 24–April 8.

It took three days by train to get to D.C. and three days to return. The group had a very inspirational time on the first Sabbath. They had sundown worship in the observation car with singing and a short worship talk. What was so inspirational was that there were other passengers who joined in with the group. Afterward, Josiah, a youth pastor, had a small Bible study with a young man who had joined the worship service.

Cody Ottaway, a seventh-grader from Desert View Christian School, in Mountain Home, Idaho, gave this insight into the trip: "At first I thought my teacher, Mrs. Carrie Tow, was joking when in October she shared with my parents about the possibility of going to Washington, D.C., with this group," he says. “I felt raising $800 by March would be impossible. I washed cars, mowed lawns, shoveled snow and began to hope. When she announced that I and two other 'Codys' would be laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns. This was UNBELIEVABLE!"

In reflection, Ottaway adds, “Seeing the Memorials, Smithsonian museums, touring the Capitol, even seeing the President's motorcade were awesome, but laying the wreath with the Honor Guard was all of our favorite thing on the whole trip."

Cody Davis, from Timberline Elementary, had been saving since 2007 when he was in first-grade, to go on a trip to Washington, D.C. When he was old enough he was excited to be included.

The wreath laying occurred on April 1. Ottaway, along with Davis; Cody Blakeney from La Grande Adventist School in La Grande, Ore.; and Dakota Maura from Enterprise (Ore.) Adventist School, presented the wreath on behalf of all Adventist schools in the United States.

All participants of the trip would like to thank Cheri De La Rosa, head teacher of the La Grande Adventist School, for coordinating this trip.