Middle school students show Veterans Day spirit

VIENNA – Edison Middle School students in The F.O.R. Club and Builders Club showed their support for veterans Monday morning along Grand Central Avenue in Vienna.

On Veterans Day, from 11 a.m. to noon, the Edison students lined up along Grand Central Avenue in front of Lowe’s, holding handmade signs and flags in support of U.S. veterans. About 60 students, parents and teachers participated.

“It was wonderful, very touching,” said Cherish George, Edison teacher who works with The F.O.R. Club.

Motorists honked their car horns in support of the students’ efforts and veterans, George said.

Some veterans, with tears in their eyes, stopped to thank the students.

The Edison students wanted to thank Lowe’s for allowing people to park in its parking lot during the event and the 7-Eleven store for providing free hot chocolate.

The F.O.R. Club makes a difference in the school and community by spreading kindness. The hope is that acts of kindness will trigger more kindness.

The F.O.R. Club stands for Friends of Rachel, part of Rachel’s Challenge, a national anti-bullying program. The program is named for Rachel Scott, the first person killed in the Columbine High School shootings in Colorado on April 20, 1999.

The Builders Club at Edison also works on projects to help the community and school.

Edison’s F.O.R. Club and the Builders Club have been doing many projects together. The students recently collected donated Halloween costumes and gave them to needy children at a Parkersburg school.

The Veterans Day event was the students’ idea.

For Christmas, the Edison students will be visiting local nursing homes where the girls will paint women’s nails and the boys will be playing games with the men.

“This is a great group, spreading kindness,” George said of F.O.R.

The kindness program, supported by a grant, began at Edison during the 2011-12 school year.

Builders Club teachers are Valerie Gates and Katie Radcliff.

Chasity Rice and Cherish George work with the seventh-grade members of The F.O.R. Club. The organization grew so much this year it added the help of teachers Gretchen Engnes and Heather Mercer for the eighth-graders and Ashley Evanick for the sixth-graders.