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Reed And Sandy Hook Send Valentines To The Troops



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Reed And Sandy Hook

Send Valentines To The Troops

To the Editor:

Do you have a friend or loved one who is in the military and currently deployed or soon to be deployed overseas? Would you like to help bring them a bit of cheer from one of our Newtown students?

A wonderful project began at Sandy Hook Elementary in January 2006 and has continued each succeeding year. Students from kindergarten to fourth grade have written cards and letters for St Valentine’s Day to our troops. This year, students at Reed Intermediate will also be writing letters, which will bring more cheer to more people.

Military deployment changes from year to year. Persons who we write to in one year may be back in the USA the next year. Each year, we must start from scratch to assemble names and addresses. If you know someone who would like a letter, we would be happy to add him/her to our master list.

A Word document is used to collect some information about the service person such as: name, military address, hobbies, pets, interests, favorite sports, and hometown. Teachers will match students to service member with “common interests” which makes for a much better letter enjoyed by both parties. All names and addresses must be collected before the end of December to be assembled for each class. Letters will be written in mid-January and mailed towards the end of January to be received by February 14.

In years past, service members have sent letters, emails, photos, and sometimes souvenirs back to our students. The children love to hear from their service member friend. It is truly a rewarding experience for everyone.

Sandy Hook Elementary has even invited “pen-pals” to their Veterans’ Day Breakfast. This has been a real treat for students and staff to actually meet some of the people that the students have written to. One of our own Newtown sons, Command Sergeant Major Arthur Fredericks, gave a slide show to everyone on Veterans’ Day. The students had written to everyone in his Connecticut National Guard Unit while they were in Afghanistan. He presented the school with a plaque from the troops to Principal Donna Pagé as a token of appreciation.

Please help spread the word about our project. It is just our small way of saying “Thank you for your service” to our military men and women who are so far from home.

If you know of anyone who is currently deployed or will be deploying shortly, please email me at ndrandle@charter.net or call me at 364-9772. We would love to add your friend or family member to our list. Thank you in advance for supporting our men and women overseas!

Donna Monteleone Randle

Project Chairperson and PTA Parent

4 Erin Lane, Sandy Hook September 23, 2008

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