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2018 Youth Essay Winners and Runners Up

 2018 Youth Essay Winners and Runners Up

Winners and their families pose with Commander Mike Denton following the award ceremony. The winners are displaying certificates.

At its January 17 meeting, Edmonds VFW Post 8870 recognized students who were 2017 winners of VFW’s three annual essay contests.

The theme for this year’s elementary school contest was “What Does a Veteran Mean to Me?” The contest was open to all public, private, and home-schooled elementary school students in the Edmonds and Mukilteo school districts in grades 3, 4, and 5. Winners advanced to district competition, culminating at the state level. 

There was no 3rd grade winner this year and the 4th and 5th grade contests were a clean sweep for Brier Elementary School. This year’s winning essay for 4th grade was submitted by Sara Ambachew and the runner-up was Brianna Reyes. At the 5th grade level the winner was Cole Harris and the runner-up was Nikolas Lopez.

For middle school students in the two districts, the contest is called Patriot’s Pen and it culminates at the national level. It is open to all middle school students in grades 6, 7, and 8 and the theme for this year’s contest was “America’s Gift to My Generation.” The winning entry was submitted by Mohuwa Wahid, a student at Explorer Middle School.

Edmonds-Woodway senior Olivia Olson once again took 1st place honors in both the local and district Voice of Democracy contest. While two contests for younger students requires a written essay, the Voice of Democracy is an oral competition requiring the submission of an audio recording. This year’s topic was “American History: Our Hope for the Future.” (See accompanying story on Olivia.) Lara Wahid of Kamiak High School was runner-up.

All winners received framed certificates and cash prizes of $100 for first place and $50 for the runners-up.

Post Recognized With Awards

District 1 Commander Don Wischman visited our July meeting to present the post with award certificates for accomplishments during the 2016-17year.

The Post earned awards at both District and National levels for:

Post Recognized With Awards

100% Reporting of Community Service
100% Hospital Reporting
Youth Essay Post Participation
Participation in the Scouting Program of VFW Outstanding support of USO, Veterans & Military Support Programs

Sponsorship and Promotion of local community activities.
The Citizen Education Teacher of the year Program

Patriots Pen
Voice of Democracy.

Post Recognizes Local Winners of National VFW Essay Contests

At the January Post meeting, we recognized several local students as winners in the annual National VFW Essay contest. One of those honored, Edmonds-Woodway High School student Olivia Olsen, won first place for the third year in a row.

 

Youth Essay ContestYouth Essay Contest

The theme for this year’s Youth Essay contest for grades 4 and 5 was “Why Are Men and Women Who Serve in the Military Special?” Winners were Finley Gonzales, a 4th grade student at Endeavour Elementary School and Margaret Moon, a 5th grade student at Mukilteo Elementary School. Runners up at this grade level who also attend Mukilteo Elementary School were Joel Brannon, Abbey Summerville, and Audrey Stewart. Two 5th graders, Trevor Coble and Ethan Jacobsen, who attend Brier Elementary School, were also selected as runners-up. Margaret was presented with a $100 scholarship from the Post, and each runner up received a $25 scholarship.

 

NL0217_Patriots_PenPatriot’s Pen Contest 

This contest is open for Middle school students in grades 6, 7, and 8, and the theme this year was “The America I Believe In.” The winning entry was submitted by Mohuwa Wahid, of Explorer Middle School. Mohuwa follows her sister, Lara, previously a two-time winner in this competition. She received a $100 scholarship. Sara Hatab of Olympic View Middle School was named runner-up. She received a $25 scholarship.

 

NL0217_Voice_of_DemocracyVoice of Democracy 

Edmonds-Woodway 11th grader Olivia Olsen garnered 1st place honors and a $100 scholarship in the Voice of Democracy contest. This essay contest is open to high school students in grades 9-12. While the Youth Essay and Patriot’s Pen competition requires a written essay, the Voice of Democracy competition requires the submission of an audio essay. This year’s topic was “My Responsibility to America.” Lara Wahid, a 9th grade student at Kamiak High School was awarded runner-up honors.

 

Each of the students who won their respective contests, read their essays to the nearly 80 parents, family members, and VFW members who were in attendance at the Jan. 10 meeting.

The post’s student essay competition is coordinated by Fred Apgar who also serves as post chaplain. The winning entries have been forwarded to Washington State VFW for consideration at the district and state levels.

VFW Student Essay Contest

By Fred M. Apgar

Details regarding the VFW Annual Student Essay Contest have been distributed to all schools in the Edmonds and Mukilteo School District. Students attending private schools or being home-schooled are eligible to enter the contest. The Youth Essay Program is for students in Grades 3, 4, and 5, and an essay, not to exceed 250 words, should address the topic ”Why are men and women who serve in the military special?”.

Students in Grades 6, 7, and 8 are eligible to enter the Patriot’s Pen program in which a 300-400 word written essay is written on the topic, “The America I Believe In”.

“Voice of Democracy” is the third program, and it is an audio essay contest for students in Grades 9, 10, 11, and 12. To enter, a student must prepare a 3 to 5 minute recording that addresses the topic, “My Responsibility to America”. 

Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three essay winners in each of the categories, and winning entries in each contest will be forwarded to the District level for further consideration.

Detailed instructions as well as an entry form, that must accompany each submission, can be obtained by visiting the Post’s web site at www.vfw8870.org. Go to the Community Support tab and click on Student Essay Program. You will be able to download the information for your grade level. All contest entries, along with the completed entry form must be submitted to VFW Post # 8870 no later than November 1, 2016. Youth Essay and Patriot Pen entries may be submitted on-line to scholarships@vfw8870.org or they can be mailed to VFW Post #8870, PO Box 701, Edmonds, WA 98020. Voice of Democracy entries must be mailed to the Post.

 

Local Students Recognized in Patriot’s Pen & Voice of Democracy Competition

Commander Blossey Congratulates Student Winners

Commander Blossey Congratulates Student Winners

At the December 8, 2015 meeting we recognized area students who participated in the AnnualVFW Essay contest. The Post’s student essay competition is coordinated by Fred Apgar.

The theme for this year’s Youth Essay contest was “Why Is America My Favorite Country?” The winning essay for 5th grade was submitted by Chloe Lee of Mukilteo Elementary. Runners Up were Mohuwa Wahid, Ellie Choi, and Sabrina Windland, also from Mukilteo Elementary. Benjamin Hoang, of Terrace Park Elementary was also a runner-up. Chloe was presented with a $100 scholarship from the Post, and each Runner Up received a $25 scholarship.

Voice of Democracy Winner

Voice of Democracy Winner

For the second consecutive year, Olivia Olsen garnered first place honors and a $100 scholarship in the Voice of Democracy contest. This essay contest is open to high school students in grades 9-12. While the Youth Essay and Patriot’s Pen competition requires a written essay, the Voice of Democracy competition requires the submission of an audio essay. This year’s topic was, “My Vision for America”. Olivia is a 10th grade student at Edmonds-Woodway High School. Accompanying the Mukilteo Elementary School students were their teachers, Ms. Aina Green and Ms. Sue Idso. Supporting the students from Terrace Park School was their teacher, Ms. Lori Kutrich.

Prior to the presentation of awards and the reading of the winning entries, Olivia Olson led the Post members and guests in the Pledge of Allegiance. The winning entries have been forwarded to Washington State VFW for consideration at the district and state levels.

Post Receives Department Recognition

Post Receives Department Recognition

Representing the Department, Past Post and District 1 Commander, Jim Traner made several presentations to Commander Jim Blossey to recognize our Post’s achievements in various VFW programs. The Post newsletter continues to be one of the best in the State of Washington, receiving second place honors. In past years, our newsletter editor, Jim Traner, has been recognized as the best in the state. Post #8870 was recognized for its continual participation in and support of the Patriot’s Pen and Voice of Democracy student essay competition, Scouting program, as well as the teacher recognition program. Our Surgeon, Al Boyett, was recognized for the efficient and timely reporting of our Community Service and Hospital reports, and similar recognition was afforded to Chaplain, Fred Apgar. Finally, our Post was recognized for its continued financial support of the USO at Sea-Tac.

Post to Recognize Teachers and Essay Winners

Just a heads up to mark your calendars to attend January’s Post meeting on the 9th. Every year we honor the winners of the Youth Essays, Patriot’s Pen, and Voice of Democracy as well as the Elementary, Middle School, and High School Teachers of the Year. We try and make this a special meeting for both students and teachers and your attendance will help us accomplish that goal.