We had a phone call at Mt.Vernon yesterday that was a little unusual and left me smiling. A woman who lives in New York City called to ask if we had a student named "Jane Doe" (names are changed to protect the innocent). In fact we did have a student by that name but she is now at the middle school, but we don't just hand that information out! The woman went on to tell us that she found a camera in a taxi labeled with this student's name. To track down the owner she clicked through some pictures and saw that in several pictures she was wearing either an Elizabeth Forward or a Mt.Vernon Elementary t-shirt. She put two and two together to reach us. Long story short we were able to put our former student in touch with this kind stranger who then mailed her her camera. The moral of this story? Wearing your Mt.Vernon shirt is a safe bet no matter where you go! There are lots of really good people out there.....
On Friday December 6 we brought our 5th Annual Food Drive to a close. 8 students from the high school (Mrs. Milliren, Warrior Choir and Interact Club kids- 7 girls and Tyler!) joined 2 of our fearless maintenance guys and I as we made the trek from school to school to school. We had an enormous box truck that we filled 3 times! It was an incredible effort from every school. The middle school had over 17,000 items and almost $1,000.00. It was so hard to believe it as the kids just kept loading and loading the food. We made deliveries to Central Food Pantry, Elizabeth Baptist Church Food Pantry and Round Hill Food Pantry.
The kids worked so hard, stopping only long enough to throw down some Subway on the bus. I wish that you all could see the joy in each school as they proudly load their donations. Most importantly the joy in the faces of the men and women who run the food pantries.
We have quite a few folks who work at EF through other agencies and they all say the same thing- they just do not see other schools do the kind of wonderful things they see going on here. They love our sense of community; the way that our schools all pull together. After 20 years I can truly say that I know exactly what they mean. We are one of a kind!
On Veteran's Day I wrote about Mr. Levdansky and what a great man he was. I am very said to say that Mr. Levdansky passed away on November 26. He will be missed by everyone who knew him.
Many words have been spoken, many pages written about the legendary deeds and the brave spirit of the men and women who serve our country. Today in many schools across America the day will pass like many others. At Elizabeth Forward we try to go a little beyond so that our students know how special these amazing people are.
Over the years through our Veteran's Day activities I have made some of the most dear and special friends.
This is Mr. Walter Levdansky who I met when we started the Veteran's Day Assemblies at the middle school. Mr. Levdansky fought in WW II in the Battle of the Bulge. He is one of the most kind and sweet gentlemen I have known and he is a true hero. Two of my favorite things to sing for are the annual Memorial Day celebration in Elizabeth and the Merchant Mariners Day. We have so many awesome veterans here in our community. I hope that today and every day, if you see someone wearing a uniform or a veteran's hat that you will stop them and simply say, "thank you".
For each of them.....
Home of the Brave by Roger Robicheau
Through the feel of war they brave this day
How proud they stand, their unselfish way
Our soldiers bear what we cannot see
They assure our right to live life free
Each trained will face an unknown fate
Our support they need, don’t hesitate
Just imagine how this land would be
Without their courage - catastrophe
All the liberties we have grown to know
Would not exist, this life would go
Find a thankfulness within your mind
Speak gratitude for our bravest kind
Have the willingness to show you care
For fallen heroes, hold back no tear
Reach out to God with his guiding light
For our troops do pray, both day and night
America raise your flags to wave
For we truly are 'home of the brave'
Stories from school and beyond.
The good, the bad and the funny. All here.