Annual essay contest was held

Published 5:30 am Sunday, April 23, 2023

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Sixth grade students in the Bogalusa and Washington Parish School Systems participated in the annual “Morals and Ethics” Essay Contest sponsored by the Health Ahead/Heart Smart Children’s Health Program. Students from public, private and parochial schools were encouraged to write an essay using prompts suggested by program coordinators. At the school level, a first and second place winner was selected to compete in the district judging.

The awards luncheon was at Cafe Bouchee’ in Franklinton.  Principals, teachers, students, parents and special guests were welcomed to the awards luncheon by Heart Smart Coordinators Terri McMillan Magee and Anita Wood.

Awards were then presented to the winners by the program coordinators. One first place winners received a gold medallion, two second place winners a silver medallion and one third place winner received a bronze medallion.  Each winner received a certificate and a check for their entries.  At the school level, each first place winner received a check. Winners receiving recognition were:

First Place –   Cooper Cassanova, Bowling Green

Second Place – Ava Rogers, Mt. Hermon

                          Madalyn Meyerchick Pine Jr. High

Third Place – Makisley Castleberry, Ben’s Ford Christian

Following the presentations, an invocation was given by Ben’s Ford Administrator, Sharon McGehee. Lunch was served and enjoyed by attendees.  Those attending the luncheon  were: Principal Phil Junkins, Emily Phelps and Valarie Comeaux from Bowling Green School, Principal Ramona Thomas, Keri Jenkins and Madalyn Meyerchick from Pine Jr. High, Principal Lee Bond, Danielle Whaley, and Ava Rogers from Mt. Hermon, Sharon McGehee, Sheryl Jones and Makisley Castleberry from Ben’s Ford Christian School. .Also attending were ADAPT Director and program fiscal agent, Rusty Fornea,  and ADAPT Financial Director, Tiffany Crain.  Terri McMillan Magee and Anita Wood represented the Heart Smart Program.

Program coordinators had a brief memorial for the late Dr. Gerald Berenson.  They spoke on his many accomplishments with the  Bogalusa Heart Study and development of the Heart Smart Children’s Health Program Curriculum which is a prevention program used presently in eleven schools.  A moment of silence was held in his memory.

The Health Ahead/Heart Smart Program staff thanks each school, principals, teachers and students for

making the essay contest a success..  Also, a special thank you to Mrs. Bridgette Russell of Gayle’s Jewelers in Bogalusa for engraving the medallions for the winners.  Kalisa Hobbs of IP, a loyal supporter of the Heart Smart Program paid expenses for the luncheon.

Funding for the program is provided by the International Paper Company of Bogalusa and the LSU Health Foundation of New Orleans.

Pictured are the judges for the Heart Smart Morals and Ethics Essay Contest. From left in the front row are Terri McMillan Magee, Joan Kennedy, and Ella Rose Bickham; second row:  Cynthia McGehee and Eathel Seals. Not pictured is Barbara Gerald who helped with the judging.