The Spanish Fork Legion Post 68 organized the Fifth Annual Freedom Walk for Spanish Fork and Salem fifth-grade students on May 10 and 11, 2022. Members from various branches of the military came and told stories to almost 1,350 fifth-grade students from13 schools over the past two days.
Nebo fifth-grade students prepared in advance of the Freedom Walk by researching veterans and writing summaries of what they learned. Banners from each of the schools lined the walking path displaying the students’ summaries and creating a Wall of Honor. Many of these summaries were the students’ own family members.
Principal Garrett Andersen said, “Sometimes fifth-graders don’t recognize the freedoms they have and the sacrifices that were made for freedom in this country. This experience, The Freedom Walk, allows these students to associate with fine veterans in our own area that have sacrificed for all of us to live in a free country.”
The Freedom Walk was first conceived by Legion member, Richard Johnson, as a way to help students have a better understanding and appreciation for military veterans. The new name of this Freedom Walk is now called the Dr. Richard Johnson Memorial Freedom Walk in his honor. This “walk” is unlike any other event organized by the Legion according to the veterans.
All students and teachers walked symbolically in the shoes of the veteran they interviewed or researched. Along the walk were six stations where Legion members would present, show items, and tell stories from their service.
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