Murrysville's Sloan Elementary School students honor first responders
Morgan Carter learned a few things last week while sharing a hot turkey lunch with a local firefighter.
First off, firefighters are pretty cool. Secondly, she never wants to go to jail.
“He tells me it's pretty bad there,” said Morgan, a fourth-grader at Sloan Elementary, as she laughed with Murrysville fire Chief Al Dover. “This is really fun.”
Dover and more than a dozen other first responders joined the students at Sloan Elementary Feb. 21 for the annual Heroes Luncheon, which is sponsored by the school's Kid Kouncil. Students invited first responders from eight local emergency response agencies to share lunch and camaraderie.
“It lets us show the heroes how much we appreciate them,” said Emily Martin, a fifth-grader and member of the Kid Kouncil. “It lets us take care of them for once.”
Dover and Murrysville police Sgt. Charles Tappe ate their turkey lunches at a table packed with fourth-graders who were hanging on their every word. The men laughed and shared stories with their young friends, who were excited to ask their lunch partners questions.
The day is meaningful and fun for Dover.
“The food is better than I remember from when I was here,” Dover joked. “It means a lot to see the time the students and teachers put in to making us feel welcome here.”
Tappe has attended the luncheon for at least six years and still sees one of the young men he shared lunch with all of those year ago around town — the boy is a teenager now. The program helps cultivate strong relationships between police, fire and EMS workers and the youngest members of the community, he said.
“It's a great bonding time,” Tappe said. “We don't want them to look at us and assume they should be afraid. We're here to help them.”
Tappe said he is touched by the booklets the students put together each year. A hand-drawn booklet of “thank yous” was on display for each department, featuring drawings of local heroes and messages of appreciation. Similar banners hung across the lunchroom, expressing gratitude for the hard work local heroes put in every day.
“I think it's a good opportunity for kids to help out and meet their heroes like the firefighters,” said Kid Kouncil member and fifth-grader Noah Rhea while taking lunch orders for firefighters and police officers as they walked in. “I really like getting to meet them and say thank you.”
Principal Tina Burns said she is proud of the way her students have embraced the local heroes.
“It says they value the adults that help them or could possibly help them,” Burns said. “Society so often puts such a value on heroes these kids will never meet – sports stars, movie stars. But these folks are every day heroes who work so hard for the community.”
Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Delmont breathes sigh of relief over pump station
- Murrysville volunteers deliver ‘Uncommon’ effort
- Franklin Regional grad follows Penn State to Dublin for game
- Colonial fur trade part of focus of Murrysville Heritage Festival
- Murrysville trainer, horse win Ultimate X title
- Murrysville Council approves $12.2 million capital-improvement plan
- WWII vet to speak to Murrysville Historical Society