Heroes of Ridgefield, interviews with local veterans, photos, inspiration and how you can help
Grade eight students at Saint Mary School (SMS) have completed one of the most important tasks during their tenure as a middle school student - a Capstone Project.
Reflecting each students’ individual interests and passions, at its core, the projects challenge the student to solve problems, take risks, and ultimately make the world a better place.
Enter Andrew Elliott.
You don’t have to look far to find community members who have served our country in times of war and conflict. They are Heroes of Ridgefield and through Elliott’s Capstone project, they are recognized, raised up, and thanked for their courageous acts for our freedom.
“We are extremely fortunate to have members in our community that have served in a variety of conflicts such as the Vietnam War, the Korean War, and even World War II, as well as servicemen and women who support our front-line troops in other ways,” says Elliott, whose great grandfather served in the Korean War as a Marine.
Elliott spent time getting to know our local war heroes and shared their stories and photos on a website he created titled Heroes of Ridgefield.
Elliott's interviews included (but were not limited to) Issy Caporale (U.S. Coast Guard for 25 years), Commander George Besse (the United States Air Force, medical field), Sergeant John Knoche (U.S. Army, active duty in Vietnam) and Tara Tosta (Naval Flight Officer).
[Please note, these are just a few of the incredible interviews. View Elliott's "Hall Of Local Heroes" for all of his veteran interviews and photos.]
“I’m fascinated by reading first-hand accounts of the experiences that soldiers had while serving on the battlefield. Throughout my interviews, I have received many different recommendations on how to help veterans,” says Elliott.
Thank you for your service and how can we help?
Elliott recommends supporting nonprofits that support veterans including Wounded Warrior Project and K-9s for Warriors and Fisher House.
But, donations are just one way to support our veterans. Memorial Day is around the corner, how about showing those on active duty you appreciate them?
“If donating to any of these charities doesn't speak to you here are some other things you can do to help support our veterans,” says Elliott. Please see his suggestions below:
Send puzzles, games, and other activities soldiers can do in their downtime.
Send snacks and drinks.
Send toothbrushes, socks, and other day-to-day items that are hard to come by while on active duty.
Send lots of letters showing your support and appreciation for what they're doing.
Thank you to Andrew Elliott for creating Heroes of Ridgefield. It’s a true gift to our veterans and our community.
And, thank you to Saint Mary School for teaching your students what it takes and means to make a real difference in the world.
Please visit Heroes of Ridgefield online here (you'll be glad you did).