The Patriots Pen essay winners are pictured with VFW post members. In front from left are Ophelia Hughes, first; Avery Ryder, third; and Madison Cardes, second. In back are Jim Manter, judge advocate; Dave Lachapelle, quartermaster; and Don Frechette, commander. Contributed

JAY — Frank L. Mitchell Post 3335, Veterans of Foreign Wars, has announced the 2020 local winners of the Patroits Pen Essay Competition. Students in the Jay/Livermore/Livermore Falls area submitted essays expressing their views on an annual patriotic theme, this year being, “What is Patriotism to Me?”

Receiving first place was Ophelia Hughes; second, Madison Cardes; and third, Avery Ryder. Thirteen students submitted essays and were independently judged by the leaders from Livermore/Jay/Livermore Falls. Judging is based on how well the applicants understand, develop and present the annual theme in their essays.

Post Commander Don Frechette said this year’s essays were especially well written and it was a pleasure to see the large turnout. “It’s an honor to have so many students submit a heartfelt view on patriotism. In today’s social challenges, this is one way the VFW reaches out on a national level to students to engage them in the learning about local veterans and veterans organizations that are in their area,” he said in a news release.

The Patriots Pen is an annual nationwide competition open to sixth, seventh and eighth graders and home schooled students, giving an opportunity to write essays expressing their views on an annual patriotic theme. Last year more than 138,000 students participated nationally through their local VFW posts.

Local post winners go to the regional level, followed by the state level. State winners advance to the national level, where over $55,000 in scholarships were awarded in 2019.

Comments are not available on this story.

filed under: