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Patriot's Pen

our own Ivana Gojcevic wins FIRST PLACE in the 5th District competition and goes on to Department competition!!

Congratulations to Shaina Opperman for winning THIRD PLACE in the 5th District Competition!

Our Post's 2007-2008 finalists were:

Our Post received entries from 360 area students this year. From these we were permitted to select 24 winners who went on to District level for judging. Congratulations to our finalists!

Katie M. Koehler, Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington Hills
Veronica B. Battersby,         "                        "
Rachel E. Rosinski               "                        "

Jordan D. Berman, Warner Middle School, Farmington Hills

Anthony M. Johnson, Millenium Middle School, S. Lyon
Cole W. Strong                     "                           "
Miya Hourani                         "                           "
Shaina L. Opperman              "                           "
Alyssa R. Adams                   "                           "

Kayleigh A. Damon, Sarah Banks Middle School, Walled Lake
Michael V. Rowland               "                           "
Denislav V. Andrecv               "                           "
Blair Whittington                     "                           "
Tyler J. Robertson                 "                            "
Cassidy C. Church                 "                            "                
Ivana Gojcevic                       "                            "
Dejanique N. Whitner              "                            "
Emily Y. Rusher                     "                            "
Kathryn A. Kuznicki                 "                            "
David J. Walczyk                    "                            "
Colin J. Crowley                     "                            "
Nicklas A. Nordstrom              "                            "
Robert J. Palmer                    "                            "
Tricia A. Cottrell                     "                            "

Our Post's 2006-2007 finalists were:

out of 151 entries our post sent these finalists on to the District Scholarship banquet:

Jarrod R., Rougeau
Clint L. Harrison - Sara Banks
Noah K. Bizer
Morgan Hendrickson
Samantha Wenzel
Gwen Hutchinson
Amanda M> Hunsinger - Millennium South Lyon
Allyssa Kashat - Our Lady of Sorrows
Kevin S. Carlton - St. Matthew Lutheran
Lisa D. Shrosbree - Warner Middle School

winners at 5th District Judging were our own Ivana Gojcevic who won FIRST PLACE, Duncan Chapman-Anderson from post 4659 won SECOND PLACE, and our own Shaina Opperman won THIRD PLACE! Congratulations and best of luck to Ivana in the Department of Michigan judging!

Theme for 2004-2005

"What Service to our country means to me "

Our Post's 1st Place Winners are:

Alison M. Nowosielski-Morche, 8th Grade, Sarah Banks Middle School, Wixom Michigan Allison won First Place at District!!

Alessandra V. Nehr, 8th Grade, Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington Michigan.

Daniel P. Bedard, 8th Grade, Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington Michigan

Click here to read Alison's winning essay

Click here to read Alessandra's winning essay

Click here to read Daniel's winning essay

Alison, Alessandra and Daniel were honored January 9 2005 at the District V.O.D. Banquet, Bruce VFW Post, St. Clair Shores.

2003-4 5th District winners were:

1st Place Danielle Schlacht, post 7573

2nd Place Nolle Kerr, post 1794

3rd Place Jaclyn Hatch, post 1407

4th Place Dylan Stec, post 2269

About the Patriot's Pen competition

Patriot's Pen, a youth essay writing contest, is a nationwide competition that gives students in grades 6,7 and 8 the opportunity to write essays expressing their views on democracy. Last year, more than 100,000 students participated in the annual contest.

Contestants write a 300-400 word essay based on an annual patriotic theme. The first place winner receives a $10,000 savings bond and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington D.C. The top national winners each receive a savings bond anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000.

The deadline is November 1
Click here for entry information 

All questions concerning local Patriot's Pen essays should be submitted to  your local VFW Post.


Alison M. Nowosielski-Morche, 8th Grade, Sarah Banks Middle School, Wixom Michigan.

Alison's essay:

     When thinking about how citizens serve America, many different things come to mind. America is a country of freedoms. Our freedom was not given to us, but it was earned. Our country celebrates that freedom by serving the United States in many different ways.

 Every time a citizen hangs a flag by their front door, puts a God Bless America bumper sticker on their car, or wears a shirt with an American Flag on it, they are expressing patriotism. By showing patriotism, we serve our country. Patriotism is one of the Core Democratic Values that we as Americans have the right to express. When other countries see our patriotism they see how much we are proud to be Americans. In a small and simple way, but with great impact, showing our patriotism serves our country.

 In the United States many citizens have organized associations across the country to help children and families who are less fortunate than most Americans. When we show that we have affection and care for homeless and starving citizens it illustrated how much we want to keep our country healthy and that we want everyone to have an opportunity to live their life to its fullest. There are programs to assure every child in the United States an education. Such programs demonstrate our care for the future generation. Groups that improve life and education and the people who volunteer to be a part of them are a great service to America.

 The most respected and noticeable of services is the Armed Forces of America. Every day thousands of men and women risk their lives to protect the freedom of our country. Troops fight for the United States, but also travel to countries that need help to assist them. Our Armed Forces are a very noble and valiant service to the United States of America.

 Americans are proud to live in such a great country, and it is shown because we see it every day. Whether a citizen is fighting overseas in the army, or wearing an American Flag pin on their suit every day to work, they are presenting their love for America and serving our great country.

Alison M. Nowosielski-Morche

Sara Banks Middle School, Wixom, Michigan

Grade 8th


Alessandra V. Nehr, 8th Grade, Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington Michigan.

Alessandra's essay:

    Service to our country is not a duty. It is not an honor. It is a privilege. Many Americans believe itís a chore, just another task that we must do to look good to our peers and family. This is especially true in our day and age, with no one really caring about honor, morals, or integrity. Service, especially service to our country, demands much more respect then most people are willing to give it.

 To me, service is going out to battle, knowing full well that you could die at any given moment. This must be terrifying, but many men and women alike are willing to risk their lives to serve their country. They go through severe training in order to enter the military, and that takes sacrifices, both mentally and physically. This is truly a respectable action by all of our active soldiers and all of the soldiers waiting for the call.

 Service is giving back to your community even when no one else will. Itís going out before the sun comes up, to pick up the trash that the guy in the car in front of you threw out his window because he was to lazy to pick it up. Itís getting you community involved to clean up your parks and streets. You canít clean up the whole United States, but you can sure do your part for your community.

 Service is teaching your children the difference between right and wrong. Itís making sure your firearms are kept out of their reach. Itís teaching them to be kind and to respect their elders. Itís helping your children see both sides of the story, not just your own, close-minded selfís story. Itís teaching your kids the history of our great nation, mentioning the bad, but focusing on the good. All of this is service because not only does it teach your children to respect other people, but also it teaches them to respect the sacrifices that their ancestors before them made to give them the great gift of the United States of America that they experience every day.

Alessandra V. Nehr

Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington, Michigan

8th Grade


Daniel P. Bedard, 8th Grade, Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington Michigan

Daniel's essay:

The dictionaryís definition of service is ďhelp given to others; a religious gathering; the military; to repair; to furnish a service to something or someoneĒ. That is exactly what it means to me. The most important types of services are the religious gatherings, the military, and working in our government.

 I have served in many religious service projects. I helped out at my churchís homeless shelter week. I helped package lunch bags for the homeless staying in the basement of the church. It was very much fun because I did it with some of my friends. When I was done I felt great because I knew that I had done something good for God and for others.

 I have reached the rank of Star in the Boy Scouts of America, an organization devoted to service. I have worked more than 25 hours in service for others. At St. Patís Soup Kitchen, I helped make and serve hot meals for the homeless. We organized a car wash in our community and all the money raised was given to a retirement home. In other projects, we fixed our Troop Trailer, and served many pancake breakfasts; this is where we serve pancakes for people who go to my church. I have raked leaves for the elderly people and packed snack bags for young children in a poor community. I like doing these things because when I am done I feel good and at the same time I had a great time with my friends.

 Another type of service is the military. The word military itself means a lot to me. The most important thing that the military means to me is that they protect our countryís freedom. Freedom means a lot to me. Freedom means I have the freedom of speech, religion, press, and many other things.

 The next thing military means to me is safety. The military keeps America safe by fighting against people who want to harm us. They also keep dangerous people that are in the country from hurting others. People in the military have a great deal of respect, love, and caring for America. The reason is because they are putting their lives at stake to save people they donít even know. I know there is not greater service to our country than that.

 Daniel P. Bedard

 Our Lady of Sorrows, Farmington, Michigan

 8th Grade





VFW Post 2269, 2652 Loon Lake Rd., Wixom Michigan 48392 248-624-9742 (ask for VFW officer or member) email