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Hickory Elementary School principal accepts U.S. flag that flew in Baghdad

April 28, 2008

Brigadier Gen. Butch Tate, U.S. Army JAG Corps, presented on behalf of Sgt. Maj. Vicki Kuk, an American flag flown over the Al Faw Palace in Baghdad, Iraq, to Mrs. Cathy Scuffins, principal of Hickory Elementary School, during a recent assembly.

The flag was flown by Kuk, III Corps SJA Office, Fort Hood, Texas, in honor of the students, faculty and staff at Hickory to thank them for their support during her unit's recent 15-month deployment.

Tate visited the school and spoke to the students about patriotism. He also visited Karen Crawford's fourth-grade writing class and shared highlights of his career and service.

At the assembly, Tate thanked the faculty, staff and students for making and sending more than 300 holiday cards and letters to his unit when he was in Iraq from 2003 to 2004.

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For the last four years, students at Hickory have sent cards to a relative or friend of someone connected to the school who was serving in Iraq, most recently to Kuk and her unit.

During the assembly, students viewed a slide show honoring American soldiers serving in Iraq.

The assembly concluded with the students singing "God Bless the USA" in honor of all servicemen and women serving in the armed forces.

Tate is the brother of Jerri McNew, a teacher at Hickory, and the son of Col. (Ret.) and Mrs. Clyde Tate of Hagerstown.

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