The activity the BUKA students had to perform to receive their STAR was to write to a US soldier from Massachusetts who is stationed in Iraq. They were asked to write a letter of thanks for fighting and defending the right to liberty and justice for all.
The soldier that they wrote to is:
SPC Samantha Urciuolo
A/15 "Hunter UAV"
APO AE 09302-1368
Samantha is the 2nd oldest daughter of my lifelong hometown best friend David Urciuolo. Her unit is attached to the 101st Airborne, the division the hunted and caught Saddam's sons, although she did not participate in that raid. Samantha flies the remote controlled surveillance drones. She loves to get letters form home and all the letters that she has received from a local girl scout troop and the BUKA students.
If you would like to make her stay in Iraq a little bit better, please write to her at the address above.
I am copying some of the letters that my students sent for you to read.
Dear PFC Samantha Urciuolo,
My name is Lauren Abbott and I am from Brockton, Massachusetts. I am writing to you today because we are doing an activity at my karate school (Brockton Uechi-ryu Karate Academy). The theme for the activity this month is to try to see how we can thank people for doing things for us and how we can show that we are thankful. My karate school picked out a soldier to say thank you to and we picked out a woman soldier to show that not just men fight in the war.
I am thankful because you and all of the other soldiers risk your own lives for your country. I would think it is scary and lonely to be at war. You also have to leave your family to protect us. You must really miss your family members and friends. That is why I appreciate all that you and the other soldiers do for us. Thank you for your bravery and willingness to defeat our enemies !!!
Keep up the GREAT work !!!!!! From Your Friend,
Hi my name is Brittany and I am ten years old. I am writing to you, and the soldiers to say thank you very much for helping our country. We all in the United States miss and love you all very much. Now I will tell you about myself, I am in fourth grade going into fifth. I think I am a good student. These are my favorite subjects Science, Reading, and lunch. "Ha-ha" I hope that made you laugh. I like karate, swimming, singing, and dancing. I have five nieces, one older sister, and two older brothers. My sister will be going to Emmanuel College and I can't wait to get the house to myself. But there is only one problem I just don't know what to do. We have a puppy he is a Pomeranian also known as a German Spitz. He is friendly and energetic. His name is K e m o and he is only one year old. Now that you know about me I would like to know about you.
Dear Samantha Urciuolo,
My name is Huy Tran. I go to the Brockton Uechi-Ryu Karate Academy. I am writing to you for my monthly activity. I've heard you are a soldier in Iraq and are fighting hard for our country day after day. I hope you will see your family as soon as possible.
When I think about soldiers like you I feel a sense of patriotism. To me patriotism is more than waving a flag it's about the feeling I feel for my country. Patriotism can also mean a feeling that you are part of something big such as a country. All of our soldiers risk their life day after day which is very admirable. When all of the soldiers are away from their family they must get home sick about things other people overlook. Most people don't appreciate the little things in life, like seeing your family in the morning when you first wake up. Even I don't appreciate the little things but all of the soldiers must do. While you're away at least you'll make friends on the way. If that's not enough you'll probably be learning many useful things you might use later in life.
All soldiers must have hearts of gold for sticking through with all of the harsh realities in Iraq. I probably can't even begin to describe all of the things you are probably going through. No matter how hard it is soon everyone will come to admire your hard work and dedication. It is clear that it is tough but in the end you'll come through.
P.S. Remember everyone will be proud of the soldiers no matter what happens.
Dear Samantha Urciuolo,
My name is Danh and I'm from Brockton, MA 02301. I'm 14 years old and in the 8th grade at South Junior High. I am writing a letter to you to say thank you for serving in the war at Iraq. Every month our teacher/sensei at the Brockton Uechi-ryu Karate Academy gives us each an optional task. This week we have to write a letter to a soldier serving in the war in Iraq and do something nice for our parents. I'm writing just to say thank you and want to know how are you doing? And also things like how is it like over there and what do you do over there. I hope you're having a good time over there. Thank you for helping to serve our country. Good-bye.
Dear Samantha Urcuiolo,
You don't know me but me name is James. I am 8 years old. I am writing to you to thank you for protecting my life and millions of other people. I think it is very nice of you to leave your family for so long and put up with the things you put up with over there. I hope you make it back home safe and sound.
My name is Marissa. I am 5 years old. Come home to your parents. Have fun with your parents. Thank you for fighting in the war and bringing peace to many people. I drew a house and your mommy and dad and you and there is flowers and grass. This is especially for you. Take care. I hope my picture makes you happy.
Be safe and take care of yourself.
Thank you for protecting our country. You are a hero. God bless you and stay safe. Come home soon.
(6 Years Old)