By Jen Hanley and John Agostino
STAMFORD—The month of November is usually designated as a time to honor U.S. veterans. But at the Catholic Academy of Stamford, such efforts take place at all times of the year.
Recently, a fifth grade class at the Catholic Academy of Stamford connected via Zoom with military members stationed over in Poland. Prior to their online meeting, the students wrote letters of thanks and sent the troops some of their favorite goodies to spread Christmas cheer since they were not able to be home for the holidays. During the Zoom, the troops expressed their gratitude for all the letters and treats that they received.
One student in the class greeted the soldiers in Polish and then translated a very heartfelt message. The students were then able to sing Christmas carols to the troops.
Another teacher at Catholic Academy has a sister by the name of Angela who serves on the American Red Cross and is stationed in Poland with the troops. Students had the opportunity to meet Angela in person the day of the CAS Veteran’s Day Service in November, and this prompted the fifth grade class to do something special for Angela and the soldiers.
These experiences enforced the importance of service to others that The Catholic Academy of Stamford instills in its students. The Catholic Academy of Stamford is grateful for our military and their service.
The Catholic Academy of Stamford takes great pride in honoring both local and national veterans. During each school year, the eighth grade students look forward to preparing a schoolwide Veterans Day Liturgy in which the school honors around 25 veterans from Stamford and other nearby areas.
The Liturgy always includes a special introduction to each veteran read by an eighth grade student reader. It also includes a special letter of thanks written and read by another eighth grade student, along with having one of the honored veterans speaking to the students on the importance of Veterans Day.
In addition to the Liturgy, the middle school students write letters to various veterans throughout the nation in order to thank them for their service and for providing continued freedom. Several of the veterans that the students have corresponded with over the years have included Senator Bob Dole, President Jimmy Carter, Vice President Daniel Quayle, Donnie Dunnagan, General Colin Powell, and Burke Waldron, along with many others.
The school’s fifth grade students have also written cards to various veterans and have corresponded with several of them over Zoom in order to learn more about veterans and to personally thank them for their service.
Later this spring, Catholic Academy’s students plan to place flags on the graves of veterans at a local cemetery in honor of Memorial Day. Overall, the students at the Catholic Academy of Stamford are pleased to have various activities throughout the year to honor veterans—not just in November, but at every opportunity they can.