Mission Trail choir thanks retired Olathe Navy veteran with surprise performance

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OLATHE, Kan. -- A veteran in Olathe is overwhelmed by an act of kindness that may seem small, but meant much more to him in a big way.

He was eating lunch when a choir class from Mission Trail Middle School surprised him by singing his praises.

Teresa Murray-Posey is Mission Trail's choir director and said her class is about more than just music.

"There’s just something about music that brings people together," Murray-Posey said. "You don’t have to be friends outside of class, but there’s something that is special when you come in and work hard for a common goal."

She's been teaching at the school for 10 years, and her students said it's their favorite class.

"I love choir because we come here, and it's like a second home, and we're all grateful to have each other, and singing really just brings us together," seventh-grader Reagan Batty said.

For Veterans Day, she took her class to Pizza Street in Olathe on their way to sing in a program for the holiday. Disabled Navy veteran and retired fire marshal, Roy Blackburn, and his wife, Carol Ann, were also there.

"I notice he has a Navy hat on, and I thought, 'How sweet is that?'" Murray-Posey said. "They're having pizza, and it's Veterans Day. We should sing to them."

"We sat down to have our regular pizza, and this woman came over and said, 'Can we sing for you?' And I said, 'Sure,'" Blackburn said.

The middle-schoolers voices brought the Navy veteran to his feet in the emotional video captured on Murray-Posey's cellphone.

"Stand up, cover my heart and enjoy my blessings," Blackburn said. "I was very proud."

"It just made me feel so happy that we got that opportunity that we got to make someone feel that way and bring that joy to him," eighth-grader Serenity Hollis said.

"It made us feel really good, and we knew it was going to make him feel really good, and it was such a simple thing — why wouldn’t we do it?" Batty said.

For a teacher, Murray-Posey said she couldn't have been more proud of her students.

"It wasn't our best singing technically, but emotionally, it is more than I could ever ask for a trophy or a one rating," Murray-Posey said. "It was the best feeling that I will never forget."

"They could have not cooperated," Carol Ann Blackburn said. "They could have been silly, but they all showed their respect and sang their hearts out."

"When I saw it on video, it just thrilled my heart to see all those guys standing up. It was just a thrilling moment," Blackburn said. "Very thrilling."

The kids said the lessons they learn in Murray-Posey's class are more than just lyrics and notes.

"If you see an opportunity, or you see a situation where you could maybe impact someone, then take that chance," Hollis said.

"God bless you," Blackburn said. "Do whatever you can for this wonderful country we live in."

Blackburn said Veterans Day is the holiday he holds most dear, and this year was the best one yet.

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