Fifth-grade student recognized for appreciation of veterans

CHAMPLAIN One local boys love for his grandfather and appreciation for veterans everywhere has earned him recognition and the respect of his elders. Friends and family of Logan Miner, a fifth-grade student at Beekmantown Elementary School, gathered at Great Chazy River Memorial Post 1418 last Saturday to witness an award given to him by post members. The ceremony was held in reaction to an essay written by the student from West Chazy, in which he and his fellow class members were asked to write about their favorite holiday. While his 16 fellow classmates all wrote about Christmas, Logan was the only one to write about Veterans Day. In his essay, Logan wrote,Veterans Day is my favorite holiday! Veterans Day is about the people who served in the military. It represents the people who lost their lives for our country. It stands for all the wars like World War I and World War II. On Veterans Day, if you watch channel 59, they have a marathon about the wars. My grandfather, Clarence Miner, is a veteran. Grandpa watches the shows all day. Once he said, If war was love, what would the world be like? I feel happy on Veterans Day, but not sad. I dont feel sad because this holiday reminds me of all the wars we won. On this day, I always say, Respect to the soldiers. To me, this is the best holiday. Steven W. Bowman, director of the Clinton County Veterans Service Agency, said local VFW post members became aware of Logans essay through a partnership with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. The two organizations began collaborating on a program a number of years ago which provides free dictionaries to third-grade students. The partnership led to greater interaction with local elementary schools and the recent discovery of Logans essay. In a society where people are bombarded with headlines about the moral decline of our nations youth, Logans respect for the people responsible for our nations freedom is refreshing, post commander Earl Robinson said. Heres a gentleman who more than exemplifies who were looking for to pass on our heritage, Mr. Robinson said before presenting Logan with a framed VFW Americanism Certificate of Merit Award and certificate for a $500 savings bond. For an 11-year-old young man to be able to think about other people in this country instead of himself, its kind of unique, said Mr. Bowman. Assemblywoman Janet L. Duprey, R-Peru, also presented Logan with a citation from the state Assembly for his essay, commending him for the respectful relationship he has with his grandfather. I never had the opportunity to know my grandfathers, said Assemblywoman Duprey, but my son and my dad had a relationship that was as special as yours and your grandfathers. I can tell you that you will cherish it every day of your life and hes very fortunate to have you for a grandson. Logans respect and recognition of those who have served and continue to serve this country is a quality of a great future community leader, Assemblywoman Duprey said. At this time, where were facing so much diversity and anxiety and arguments about the war in Iraq, said Assemblywoman Duprey, you certainly make all of us realize and understand that we must never, for a single moment, forget to thank, pray for and respect the military men and women who are serving to keep our rights free. Logans teacher, Mary Maher, recalled reading his paper which she considered a very moving piece. Ive been teaching for 22 years and Ive never had a child write a paper like that, said Ms. Maher. Even when I hear it today, it gives me goosebumps. As Logan thanked those who turned out for the reception in his honor, he made a note to especially thank Ms. Maher and his grandfather for serving as the driving forces behind his accomplishment. Ms. Maher is always pushing and pushing trying to get me to work harder and harder, said Logan. Grandpa is always telling me his war stories and showing me his war pictures. Hes always inspiring me to write. Logans grandfather was moved by his grandsons words and remarked how much he enjoys his time with him. Living in Syracuse, more than 200 miles away from his grandson, makes their time all the more valuable, Mr. Miner said. When we get together, weve always got to go for a walk and talk and bond, said Mr. Miner. I love him. During the presentation, post event chairman Donald Miller, who was first to learn of Logans essay from Ms. Maher, read congratulatory letters for Logan from Sen. Hillary Clinton and Rep. John M. McHugh, R-Pierrepont Manor. David R. Carr, secretary of the New York State Elks Association, also presented Logan with a certificate of appreciation for his exemplary tribute to our nations veterans. Logans letter will now be framed and placed on the wall of the Great Chazy River Memorial Post where Mr. Bowman said it will remain as long as the post exists.

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