Hannah Jeffords, a sixth-grader at Northwest Middle School, has won the county and district competition in a VFW essay contest. Her essay is now in the running at the state level.
Each year, the Veteran of Foreign Wars sponsors the Patriot's Pen essay contest for young people.
After Chris T. Smith, who teaches social studies at Northwest, submitted the "What Freedom Means to Me" essays written by her students to the Clemmons VFW Post #90110 last fall, Hannah won first place in the county.
Smith found out last week that Hannah won first place for the district. “Now her essay is going to state to compete against other district level winners,” Smith said.
"It felt awesome to win the Patriot's Pen essay because my family was so proud of me,” said Hannah. “I have never won a contest with such a large reward before. I won a certificate and $50 for winning at the county level and $200 for winning at the district level. My essay will be submitted for the state Patriot's Pen Competition. I will know sometime later if I place at The North Carolina state level competition."
Here is an excerpt from her essay:
“…freedom does not mean you can do whatever you want. It means to do the right thing when it is right to do so…With freedom comes responsibilities that can affect my freedom. For example, as long as I respect my parents, I continue to have freedom to be in school clubs and hang out with my friends. If I show disrespect, my parents have the authority to take away my freedom…My faith teaches me that true freedom starts in the heart. Our heart has the freedom to choose right from wrong.”
Before going to Northwest, Hannah attended Old Richmond Elementary School.