Washington Evening Journal
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Washington, IA 52353
Pekin fifth-grader donates essay winnings to Hedrick couple
Mar. 6, 2023 11:33 am
HEDRICK – A Pekin Elementary School student has fulfilled her promise to donate the proceeds from her essay contest victory to a Hedrick couple who lost their home in a fire.
Hailey Ludden, a fifth-grader at Pekin Elementary School, won $100 for penning the winning essay in a contest where students were asked to write a 300-word story on “What the Flag Means to Me.” Ludden received the money from the American Legion during a ceremony at the school on Jan. 27, and a few days later announced that she wanted to donate the money to local veterans in need.
The Legion thanked Hailey for her act of kindness, and pointed her in the direction of Keith and Elaine Blair, a Hedrick couple whose house burned down in December. In February, the civic center in Hedrick hosted a free-will donation dinner to benefit the Blairs, where Hailey presented Keith with a check for $100.
In an interview with The Southeast Iowa Union, Hailey explained why she chose to donate her essay winnings to veterans.
“I am very thankful for the wars they’ve fought in to make us safe,” she said. “There are also battles they fight at home when they come back. It’s sad how they fought for us to keep us safe, but they’re out on the streets. That’s not very nice.”
Call Andy Hallman at 641-575-0135 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org