A Soldier in the Family

Canyon Vista staff members are proud of their family in the military. Clockwise from top left: Mrs. Casmedes' brother Lt. Gen. Bob Lennox, her nephews Capt. Mark Lennox, Capt. Daniel Lennox, Maj. Andrew Lennox, Maj. Matthew Lennox, and Mrs. Casmedes' brother retired Lt. Gen. Bill Lennox; Mrs. Casmedes' niece Capt. Amanda Lennox; Mrs. Casmedes with her brothers Lt. Gen. Bob Lennox and retired Lt. Gen. Bill Lennox at Bob's 3 Star General Promotion; Mrs. Moeller's son Staff Sgt. Ryan Moeller in Afghanistan. Photos from personal collections

Canyon Vista staff members are proud of their family in the military. Clockwise from top left: Mrs. Casmedes’ brother Lt. Gen. Bob Lennox, her nephews Capt. Mark Lennox, Capt. Daniel Lennox, Maj. Andrew Lennox, Maj. Matthew Lennox, and Mrs. Casmedes’ brother retired Lt. Gen. Bill Lennox; Mrs. Casmedes’ niece Capt. Amanda Lennox; Mrs. Casmedes with her brothers Lt. Gen. Bob Lennox and retired Lt. Gen. Bill Lennox at Bob’s 3 Star General Promotion; Mrs. Moeller’s son Staff Sgt. Ryan Moeller in Afghanistan. Photos from personal collections

Every morning, the students of Canyon Vista stand to say the pledge of allegiance. But what students don’t realize is that to many people, the pledge is more than just words. It is a tribute to the brave men and women who give their lives for our freedom.

It is especially important to 7th grade teachers Mrs. Moeller and Mrs. Casmedes. Moeller’s son, Ryan, has served in the Reserves for six years, and her dad served in the Army Air Corps for four years during World War ll.

As for Casmedes, her grandfather, dad, brothers, nephews, and nieces have all served or are currently serving in the U.S. Army. “My brother Bill served for 35 years. He was a West Point [graduate] and then returned to serve as Superintendent for five years. My brother Bob is also a West Point [graduate] and has served for 36 years. My nephews have all done tours overseas, sometimes more than once. We are a huge army family!” said Casmedes.

Although Moeller and Casmedes miss their family members while they are away, they say they always send support through mail and packages. “With all our technology, keeping in touch has been so much easier- there is email and Skype. But we still send the packages to keep their spirits up and send a piece of home,” replied Casmedes. “We still have some of the letters my dad sent to my mom, and his mother and dad during World War ll.”

During the hard times, both teachers say they pray for their family. And, there have been some scary moments. “My nephew was Skyping with his family when a bomb went off and he dove under the desk. They lost the connection, but he was fine,” said Casmedes.

Moeller relates, “Ryan had a suicide bomber drive, and set off a car full of bombs very close to him. Luckily, not all of the bombs went off, or he would have been killed or wounded.”

There are many ways we students can contribute to helping the military. Many organizations send things during the holidays. “They often need basic supplies too- toothpaste, razors, peanut butter, hard candy,” said Casmedes.

Casmedes says she is very proud that her family serves. “I often get upset when people are not respectful during the pledge and the National Anthem. I wish they would realize there are lots of men and women who put their lives on the line so we can have the freedom to say and sing it.”

Moeller is also extremely proud of her son. “I very much admire and appreciate the men and women who serve our country and make it safe for us to live in this great country. We can’t even comprehend the sacrifices they make.”

We’d like to thank the family members of Mrs. Moeller, Mrs. Casmedes, and all of those who serve. Your labor is not in vain. Today, we honor you.