Kept Standing

26 Dec

Folks, I am once again posting a story I received via my AOL mail account.  I get these from time to time, but only recently have I shared any.  This is a case where I didn’t write it (and I don’t know who did, because if I did I would give them credit),  I can’t vouch that it’s 100 percent true (and again I don’t care it’s the thought that counts, but it is in fact true details below), and my style of writing is not elegant enough to convey this message.  But one thing for certain, I served in the US Navy for 9 years active duty, and I was so proud to serve our my country that when I left the Navy I sought out a job working for the Federal Government, which I was lucky enough to get.  There I spent the next 30 years of my life, retiring from US Government service after almost 40 years.  I am so so very proud to have had the honor of working for Our Government.  The flag they gave me is proudly displayed here on my desk.


I said all that as set up for this wonderful story.  Makes me damn glad to be a veteran. 


Back in September of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a
Military History teacher at Robinson High School in Little Rock, AK did
something not to be forgotten. On the first day of school, with the
permission of the school superintendent, the principal and the
building supervisor, she removed all of the desks out of her classroom.

When the first period kids entered the room they discovered that there were no desks.

‘Ms. Cothren, where are our desks?’

She replied, ‘You can’t have a desk until you tell me how you earn the right
to sit at a desk.’

They thought, ‘Well, maybe it’s our grades.’

‘No,’ she said.

‘Maybe it’s our behavior.’

She told them, ‘No, it’s not even your behavior.’

And so, they came and went, the first period, second period, third period.
Still no desks in the classroom.

Kids called their parents to tell them what was happening and by early
afternoon television news crews had started gathering at the school to
report about this crazy teacher who had taken all the desks out of her room.

The final period of the day came and as the puzzled students found seats on the floor of the deskless classroom, Martha Cothren said, ‘Throughout the day no one has been able to tell me just what he or she has done to earn the right to sit at the desks that are ordinarily found in this classroom. Now I am going to tell you.’

At this point, Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom and
opened it.

Twenty-seven (27) U.S. Veterans, all in uniform, walked into that classroom, each one carrying a school desk. The Vets began placing the school desks in rows, and then they would walk over and stand alongside the wall. By the time the last soldier had set the final desk in place those kids started to understand, perhaps for the first time in their lives, just how the right to sit at those desks had been earned.

Martha said, ‘You didn’t earn the right to sit at these desks. These heroes
did it for you. They placed the desks here for you. They went halfway
around the world, giving up their education and interrupting their careers
and families so you could have the freedom you have.

Now, it’s up to you to sit in them. It is your responsibility to learn, to
be good students, to be good citizens. They paid the price so that you could
have the freedom to get an education. don’t ever forget it.’

By the way, this is a true story. And this teacher was awarded Veterans of
Foreign Wars Teacher of the Year for the state of Arkansas in 2006. She is
the daughter of a WWII POW.

Please consider passing this along so others won’t forget either that the
freedoms we have in this great country were earned by U. S. Veterans. Always remember them and the rights they have won for us. Blessings abound in the USA!


Folks I am not totally lazy, LOL, only a little bit.  I did some research and this story is in fact 100 percent true.  I also suspect that more than likely 95 percent of you are not repeat not seeing it for the 1st time.  Smiling, but you are seeing it for the 1st time from me.  Below is some supporting documentation from

The story is true.  

The text of the eRumor is taken from a speech given by former Arkansas governor and potential presidential candidate Mike Huckabee at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C. on March 2, 2007.  It describes events in Cothren’s Military History class in 2005.  

The Veterans of Foreign Wars chose Cothren as a Teacher of the Year in Arkansas for 2005-2006.


Posted by on December 26, 2013 in Grandpa Stories, Observations, Ramblings


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

14 responses to “Kept Standing

  1. benzeknees

    December 26, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    I have heard this story before & although I am not an American (I am Canadian), I fully support this whole idea of teaching our children to be thankful for their hard won freedoms.

    • FlaHam

      December 26, 2013 at 4:24 pm

      Benze, The single greatest thing about this it can apply to any country who has a military presence that holds it’s veterans in high regard. I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if there was a story about a Canadian school teacher having a similar experience. The pride in one’s country and their military is something for all of us. Please take care and be safe — Bill

  2. huntmode

    December 26, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    Dear Bill, I am delighted to read this again. Here is the fact check at – I think you’ll like it as well.

    • FlaHam

      December 26, 2013 at 4:29 pm

      Hunt, Smiling I had done a fact check on it as well, and I was delighted to find out it was in fact true. But even if it weren’t it is still something I would have published in the hopes that it ignited a fire in someone that could do something similar. It was a wonderful lesson taught those kids that day. Take care, Bill

  3. Chatter Master

    December 26, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    I love this story Bill. That teacher showed such respect. I would love a follow up story to see if the students who heard that, did indeed, do all they could to take advantage of the seat that the veterans earned for them.

    • FlaHam

      December 26, 2013 at 6:44 pm

      Colleen, what an interesting subject that would be for a post, to find the some of the kids that cycled thru her class room that day, and find out what if any impact that had on their lives. Take care, Bill

      • Chatter Master

        December 26, 2013 at 10:33 pm

        I hope someone does that. 🙂

        • FlaHam

          December 26, 2013 at 10:36 pm

          Colleen, In a perfect world someone is planning it right now, trying to line up 25 or so Vets so they are available when the kids go back to school the week after next. I wish them luck, and I hope that even get on the news as well. Take care, Bill

          • Chatter Master

            December 27, 2013 at 7:44 pm

            If you hear anything about it, please share! 🙂

  4. kanzensakura

    December 26, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    I don’t care if stories like these are true or not. After all, our Lord Jesus taught in parables. But I hope more support is garnered from this stories and others like them. My papa served in the 3rd army during WWII. What he and others suffered cannot fully be explained. I am proud of him. I thank you for your service to our country. God bless America, God bless our active military personnel and those “retired”.

    • FlaHam

      December 26, 2013 at 6:42 pm

      Kanzen, It is because of your father and men like him, that we can sit here and write what we want. It is through their courage that this country is what it is. Thank you, for the encouragement that you give so freely, take care and be safe. — Bill

  5. The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap

    December 27, 2013 at 11:57 am

    Great lesson here and wonderful that it points back to the selfless service of others so we know freedom. Beautiful post, Bill. Thank you. 🙂

    • FlaHam

      December 27, 2013 at 1:18 pm

      Paulette, It is these type of actions from little known sources, trying to teach simple lessons that always seem to have the most global impact. It is truly amazing where one thought will lead you. If I were Martha Cothren every time I heard this story recounted I would be so damn proud and so damn embarrassed at the same time, and yet I would be thankful too. As always thank you so much for your continued encouragement and support. Paulette you are indeed a special friend. XOXO Bill


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

secret Blogger

Status : surviving highschool

How the Cookie Crumbles

Life and scribbles on the far side of SIXTY-FIVE

a story of Southern agriculture

Me, My Magnificent Self

Living Life as a Celebration

Kira Moore's Closet

Ever Moving Forward

%d bloggers like this: