Remembrance day: the eleventh day of the eleventh month was commemorated at Kuwait English School with a special flag-raising ceremony, where the savoir-faire of its more than 1,600 students was in evidence, who stood in silence and respectful anticipation throughout the touching ceremony.
The head boy and head girl, Elijah Jacob and Dania Malekghasemi, along with the deputy headboy and girl, Vedant Khaitan and Christine Matthew, accompanied the dignitaries to the flag-raising area, and the school band, directed by Mr Steven Tarry, KES Band Master, then proceeded to play stirring renditions of the Kuwaiti national anthem.
School director, Mrs Rhoda Elizabeth Muhmood MBE, addressed and welcomed the special guest of honour, Brigadier Andrew Barr CBE and thanked him and the rest of the audience for their presence on this special day. She also reminded the gathered staff and students of why they were all there; to pay our respects to those personnel in military conflict who had given the ultimate sacrifice: their lives.
Brigadier Andrew Barr reminded the audience that “Remembrance Day gives us all an opportunity to reflect, to respect and to remember”. He also alluded to the significance of the poppy as a “sign of hope for a peaceful future” and a “reflection of individual experiences and personal memories”.
Joint Head of Music, Ms Donna Clarke, superbly played both the ‘Last Post’ and the ‘Reveille’ whilst the Kuwaiti flag was lowered and then raised again. Ms. Clarke’s poignant performance was one of the highlights of the ceremony.
The audience was then treated to the angelic voices of the School A Capella choir, singing ‘The green fields of France’ directed by Mr Michael Hassan, joint Head of Music.
The end of a sombre but dignified event was marked by the school band, conducted by Mr Steven Tarry, playing ‘Ivanhoe March’ along with ‘Sands of Kuwait’, as the visiting dignitaries left the arena.
Before the departure of the students to their classes, Mrs Carew and the School Director, along with Mr M E Muhmood, School Manager, and Ms Una Barras-Hargan, accompanied Brigadier Barr as he walked among the Junior and Senior School students and exchanged words with a number of them; one could see from their shining and eager faces that the students were both appreciative and impressed to respond to Brigadier Barr’s comments.
Indeed a very significant day of Remembrance leaving all present with some indelible memories.
From left to right: Christine Matthew, Elijah Jacob, Mr Muhmood E. Muhmood, Mrs Janet Carew, Brigadier Andrew Barr CBE, Mrs Rhoda Elisabeth Muhmood MBE, Dania Malekghasemi and Vedant Khaitan
Brigadier Andrew Barr CBE shows an interest in students’ school life
KES choir captivates the audience with their beautiful voices
Brigadier Andrew Barr CBE addresses the gathered students