Only in Indiana: Dear Soldier


WESTFIELD, Ind. (WTHR) - At St. Maria Goretti, it is not enough to talk the talk. You need to walk the walk. That is something the school takes great pride in.

In this instance, one of the classes adopted a platoon.

"They wanted soap; bandanas because it is very sandy. It helps protect them. Ramen noodles are a hot item," explains Tina McCullough, who teaches Scripture.

They already have the picture of one of the soldiers who will get these goodies in Kuwait, but they wanted to do even more.

"Dear soldier," one student reads.

"Thank you for your service," a second adds.

"Happy Valentine's Day," a third continues.

"What a great way to encapsulate Valentine's Day. Giving back to servicepeople and just letting them know how much the kids care. The kids don't even know who they are," points out Kathleen Curry, who teaches critical thinking.

"Thank you so much for your service. We will never be able to repay you. I hope your day is as amazing as you are. Happy Valentine's Day from Ella," 8th grader Ella Friedman read aloud.

And that is the magic - 6th, 7th and 8th graders stepping out of their comfort zones to write to someone they will never know, much less meet.

"Thank you for your service. We are praying for you from here in Indiana, and Happy Valentine's Day. Love from Grace," reads Grace Worcester, another 8th grader.

"Thank you for all you do. You are so great to us, so we want to tell you how much we love you. Thank you, Grant," Grant Harlowe, a 6th grader, reads aloud.

"Thank you for everything you do. We are sending you prayers. I hope Valentine's Day is as great as you are. I hope this brightens your day. Molly," Molly O'Brien a 6th grader reads from hers.

Sitting alongside them as they work, it's hard to see how it couldn't brighten someone's day. I wish America's best could see this -- America at its best.

"Thank you for your service to our country. We are very glad our country is safe in your hands. Have an amazing Valentine's Day. Alana," Alana Thomas a 6th grader wrote.

"I hope you have a great day. Thank you so much for keeping our country safe. You are a hero. Your friend, Ava," read 7th grader Ava Friedman.

It lasted only a few minutes, but the sentiment expressed here will last much longer.

But there is always one. One person who is so engaged in what they are doing that they don't hear the announcement, don't notice everyone else has gone because she is not done. There is one more thing she needs to do as she picks up a marker and colors the heart on her valentine in red.

The valentines were delivered to soldiers at Camp Atterbury last weekend.