award was to be given at the VFW Mid-Winter Conference to our State Winner in
Education Teacher Award contest. But
Mother Nature’s ice storm prevented us from attending the conference.
Mr. Ben Haindel, teacher from Northlake Christian School, won at the
State level for 9-12 grade category.
the Louisiana Veterans of Wars (VFW) & Ladies Auxiliary have 4 Americanism Contests
grade levels (K-6) to help instill Patriotism in our youth. Two of our
winners won at the District
level. The District winners
Olivia Quiroz, a
4th grade student at
Our Lady of the Lake won the Drawing of
a Historical Event. She drew a
picture of the Twin Towers being attacked on 9/11.
Trevor Fortier, a
5th grade student at
Our Lady of the Lake School, won the Essay
contest for 5th & 6th graders. This year’s theme was “How I Honor Veterans.” Trevor also won 2nd place at
Auxiliary has the Outstanding Youth
Volunteer contest to recognize students 12-16 that make a difference in
their Community with their volunteer work.
They compete at Post and State levels only. The State Winner has not
been announced yet,
but we feel that our winner, Sean Noel,
a 6th grade student at Tchefuncte Middle School, has an excellence
chance of winning the State award. He created and developed St.
Tammany Remembers, a program to recognize our Parish veterans: He
co-created Warm Hearts, a program
that collects and distributes blankets
& cold-weather items throughout the region; Sean’s
Factor, a yearly
fundraiser to raise awareness of Hemophilia & provide funds to the
Louisiana Hemophilia Foundation, is another of his programs; he collected over
$1,000 in new books and
donated it to a new Children’s Library , the Noel Library at Lurline Smith
Mental Health Facility; he developed a new anti-bullying speaker’s
program, Stand Up and Stop It; he
is also Boy Scout, member of his
school’s Builder Club, a community activist speaker and volunteer at Idel’s
Annual Thanksgiving Feast. He
had 357 hours of community service in 2013.
Not only is he our Outstanding Youth Volunteer. He also placed 2nd in
our Patriot’s Pen Essay contest.
presented our Outstanding Emergency
Medical Technician Award to Tabatha
(Tabby) Valencia. We also presented her State award for winning 3rd place at
also started out young, at the age of 14, by volunteering as a Jr. Fire
Volunteer. This inspired her to become a
medic and provide medical care to the rural area. She has been an EMT Paramedic
at Acadian Ambulance Service for 7 years.
She received the Meritorious Service Award in 2010 for saving the life
of young man who had a life threatening injury from riding on a four wheeler
and driving into a barbed wire fence.
Left to right – first row are:
Fortier, 5th grader from Our Lady of the Lake School – District
winner who also won 2nd place at State for his Americanism Essay;
Olivia Quiroz, 4th grader from our Lady of the Lake School –
District Americanism Historical Event Art contest winner; Sean Noel, 6th
grader at Tchefuncte Middle School – Post winner in the Outstanding Youth
Volunteer Contest ;
Second Row: Mike Peats, District
Homer Williams VFW Post Commander; Tabatha Valencia, EMT Paramedic at Acadian
Ambulance Service – won the Outstanding Emergency Medical Technician Award at
the Post level and placed 3rd at State; Ben Haindel, teacher at
Northlake Christian School – State winner in the Citizenship Education Teacher
Award; Kay Peats, Programs Chairman Homer Williams VFW Ladies Auxiliary.
Photo and article courtesy of Ms. Kay
Chairman – Americanism and Youth Activities