Allan Setterberg is a proud veteran who knows firsthand that freedom is not free. Setterberg, who has worked as a custodian in Jordan and Canyons districts for 23 years, recalls his tour of duty in the Vietnam War with equal doses of pride and patriotism, somberness and sincerity, reflection and resilience.
“If anyone ever tells you they weren’t scared in combat, either they are crazy or they weren’t in combat,” says Setterberg, one of the approximately 50 men and women in Canyons’ employee corps who are former or current members of the Armed Forces. “I love my country with a passion. I served my country in one of the most unpopular wars in history. When we got back, we weren’t treated so well. But would I do it again? Yes because I love my country.”
On Veterans Day, Monday, Nov. 11, 2013, Canyons District will salute Setterberg and other veterans of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. Schools are planning ways to honor veterans while also dispensing lessons about the fight for freedom throughout our country’s history. Alta High’s annual effort to honor the community’s veterans is a highlight of CSD Veterans Day activities. This year, the Hawks will hear from BYUtv’s Stan Ellsworth at a 9 a.m. assembly. Local veterans will be honored at the event and a reception. In addition, Brighton High’s studentbody officers produced a YouTube video highlighting the school’s faculty and staff who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Setterberg, who conducted reconnaissance missions, speaks to schools about his 1968-1969 tour of duty. He says it’s important to tell children about the wars that have been fought and why it’s important to take up arms in defense of America’s people and principles. He also has been involved in the American Legion for 45 years to ensure that veterans continue to receive the government benefits they earned through their service. “It’s important to take care of our own,” he says.
“I always make sure I say thank you to those who served before me and after me,” says Setterberg, who now works at the Canyons Administration Building. “If I see a (member of the military) in the airport, I’ll go up to them and shake their hand and tell them thank you for serving the country … Veterans Day really does mean we honor the past and fallen soldiers. You have to honor them for having served their country.”
The Board of Education salutes veterans in the District, the community and across the country for their military service. “The American freedoms we enjoy are firmly in place because of those who have sacrificed to keep the United States the land of the free and the home of the brave,” said Sherril H. Taylor, President of the Canyons Board of Education. “We honor and recognize your selfless service to our country. The service you have given will never be forgotten. We are proud to have you among our ranks.”