VFW honors Voice of Democracy essay winners

Patriots Pen and Voice of Democracy essay winners from left, Kelsey Wetegrove, Samantha Elise Wilson, Taylor Sanchez, Ely Linberg and Carlos Urbina at the Fallbrook VFW Post 1924, Nov. 18. Not pictured is Voice of Democracy second place essay winner Luke Gillcrist. Shane Gibson photos

FALLBROOK – Fallbrook Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 1924 and Auxiliary hosted an awards ceremony, on Nov. 18, honoring the student winners of the Annual Voice of Democracy scholarship essay program. Smiling and proud family members, teachers and guests listened and watched as the confident and articulate students read their essays with purpose, and strength.

The Voice of Democracy essay contest is open to students in grades 9 through 12. The theme for this year was, “American History: Our Hope for the Future”.  First place winner, and recipient of a $500 scholarship, is tenth grader Ely L. Lindberg. Second place and a $300 scholarship went to 12th grader Luke J. Gillcrist. Third place and a $200 scholarship went to 10th grader Carlos G. Urbina.

The Patriot’s Pen essay contest is open to middle school students, in grades 6 through 8. The theme this year was “America’s Gift to My Generation.” First place winner, and recipient of a $300 scholarship, is Samantha Elise Wilson. Second place and a $200 scholarship went to Taylor N. Sanchez. Third place and a $100 scholarship went to Kelsey Wetegrove. All three of these winners are in seventh grade.

In attendance were student teachers and faculty, several family members, friends and comrades of the VFW. Members of the Auxiliary graciously volunteered in support and coordination for this event. Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 1924, and Auxiliary, would like to acknowledge Fallbrook Pizza Hut and Vince’s Pizza for their fresh and fabulous pizzas. And, for the second year in a row, Fallbrook’s Yogurt Palace provided the yogurt cup desserts and sprinkles. The VFW appreciates their contributions to the scholarship award luncheon.

The outpouring support for the Fallbrook VFW Voice of Democracy Program demonstrates the importance that student voices, about democracy, must be heard. Fallbrook VFW Post 1924 also appreciates all participating judges, teachers, and mentors who facilitated and encouraged the Voice of Democracy program.

For more information about the Voice of Democracy scholarship essay program, and next year’s theme, go to www.vfw.org.

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