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WVMS students write ‘letters to injured soldiers’

Students at West Valley Middle School recently participated in a project designed to offer support to injured U.S. soldiers recuperating at Walter Reed Medical Center in Texas.

Eight-grade social studies teacher Scotty Hicks, who spent time in Iraq himself in 2004-2005, encouraged his students to write letters to these injured soldiers to acknowledge their service and sacrifice for America’s freedom.

“I explained to them how important it is to recognize these individuals and how important they are to us,” Hicks said,

He said he got the idea from Terri Craze, the mother a student in one of his classes.

“For the last two years my classes have sent packages to the soldiers who are serving, but this year we didn’t get to do that, so when [Craze] called, I did a little research and found that the American Red Cross was taking care of this.

“I thought it would be a great way for the students to acknowledge the soldiers that have been injured,” he added.

The project was not mandatory for a grade and students were given the choice not to participate, but Hicks said every student who was not absent on letter-writing day participated.

“I let them write a letter in class and they mailed that letter. Everybody brought in an envelope and a stamp, and I had them address the letter and mail it off. I think we had approximately 132 letters mailed off, “ he said.

The students have not yet received any responses, but Hicks is optimistic that they will. He said there is a delay in getting the letters to the soldiers because they are mailed to the Red Cross and then distributed among the soldiers.

“I had the students put the school’s address on the envelope for safety issues,” he added.

Hicks said the students enjoyed the project.

“I gave them some suggestions of things they might say, to tell them a little about themselves, but I wanted the students to tell them in their own words why they were thankful that these soldiers had risked their own lives to give us the freedom that we have,” he said.

They were very receptive. I had some students wrote oneand two- page letters and some who wrote very little, but overall the response was really good,” Hicks added.

“It was a win-win situation because the students learned something from it and hopefully the soldiers can benefit in feeling appreciated.”


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