Thank-you from the Bayou

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 12, 2006

AHOSKIE – DeJon expressed his thanks.

Ditto from Kevin, Rokeisha, Joshua, Shontae and Damien, just to name a few of the students of Boudreaux Elementary School located in Terrytown, Louisiana.

Those young students, whose lives were shattered when Hurricane Katrina turned their world upside down in early September, expressed their appreciation for an act of kindness shown by Ahoskie Brownie Troop 2107.

Just before Christmas, the local Brownie Troop leaders received several letters by mail from Boudreaux students and faculty members. That correspondence was in regards to the book bags and other school supplies sent by Troop 2107 in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Each of the students’ letters followed the same format, but the intent to express thanks was well-received by the local Brownie leaders.

“The faculty member that responded on behalf of the school was very appreciative of the time and effort put forth by our Brownie Troop members,” said Catherine Pierce who, along with her sister Carolyn, is the co-leader of the local young ladies.

“The letter said the book bags and school supplies we sent were badly needed because the children there lost everything.”

Terrytown (population 25,500), a suburb of New Orleans, sits on the west bank of the Mississippi River. It took a direct hit from Hurricane Katrina.

“We felt for those people who were in harm’s way in New Orleans and all across the Gulf Coast states hit hard by Katrina,” Pierce said. “We talked to our girls about the disaster. We talked about what we could do to help those who had lost everything they had. We wanted the girls to know and understand the impact that Mother Nature can have and how we can reach out and help those affected by such a storm.”

Taking part in the “Kids Helping Kids” program, the 10 members of Troop 2107 solicited help from family and friends to collect book bags, pencils, pens, erasers, notebooks, binders and personal items like a toothbrush and toothpaste.

Using the Ahoskie Library as a drop-off point, the Brownies, all first-graders, collected and sorted the donations from their home base in a Sunday School room at First Presbyterian Church. They were shipped to a central distribution point in Houston, Texas. From there, the supplies wound-up in the hands of Boudreaux Elementary School students.

According to Pierce, Ahoskie Brownie Troop 2107 sent 35 book bags, each full of school and personal supplies.

“Thank-you for sending us the back packs and school supplies,” read the simple notes on lined paper from the students. “We liked the gift. We are using the supplies to help us learn many things.”

Greg LeRoose, a Health and Physical Education teacher at Boudreaux, wrote to the local Brownies, “Words cannot express how I feel with your thinking of us. You have truly learned the value of sharing.”

A “Winnie the Pooh” Christmas card was also mailed by Boudreaux students to their new-found friends in Ahoskie. The card was signed by 23 students.

“Whether it was one or 23, we were just happy to be a part of the outpouring of love and support for those affected by this terrible storm,” Pierce concluded. “We are very proud of each and every one of our Brownie Troop members and we all say thanks to those here at home that helped us in this effort.”