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McKenna Students Honor Military Heroes


As a thank-you for their service in the United States military, veterans were invited to McKenna Elementary School on Nov. 7 for an appreciation breakfast.

Students extended invitations to veterans in their families. As they sat together around tables covered in red, white and blue tablecloths, they listened to the 10 winners of the school’s inaugural “My Hero” essay contest. The contest was open to students in grades 3-5 who could write about any hero in their lives, with many choosing parents or grandparents who served in the armed forces.

The winners included third-graders Jonathan D., Kellan D. and Casey H., fourth-graders Brooke D., Isabell G., Juliana O. and Dylan P., and fifth-graders Nicholas B., Kyliegh B. and Tiffany G. Keira K. performed a violin solo of “This Land is Your Land.”

A video montage included photos of all the guests from their service days. The fifth-grade chorus sang “America the Beautiful” while kindergartners performed “Grand Ole’ Flag” as they waved miniature American flags.

Massapequa Park VFW Post 7763 Commander William E. Colfer, who attend McKenna when it first opened as a junior high, expressed how much the ceremony meant to him and his fellow veterans. He spoke about the importance of teamwork, noting that while not all servicemen and women face combat situations, they all play important roles.

“At McKenna, we always try to teach our students the value of respect,” Assistant Principal Mary Anne Ferraro said. “The purpose behind the Veterans Day ceremony is to not only bridge the community and school but to remind our students the value each and every one of our special guests brings to their lives.”