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Local VFW recognizes award winners at community awards banquet

A capacity crowd was in attendance for the Veterans of Foreign Wars
All-American Post 10904 Community Awards banquet, held February 14 in the
Coffee County Veterans Building. Among those attending were Coffee County
Mayor Gary Cordell, VFW State Commander Brian Walker and several other
officers with VFW Department of Tennessee.

After an incredible meal prepared by VFW Post Chaplain Hans Hooker and his
wife, Post Auxiliary Member Virginia, Lloyd Smith performed the National
Anthem to open the ceremony.

Four new VFW Life Members were welcomed to the Post. Veterans Military
Support Appreciation Awards were presented to Beth Murphy of Hickerson
Elementary School; Jamie Harden of Harden Signs;

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Betty Hamry and Amy Carter of United Daughters of the Confederacy, Calvin C.
Brewer Chapter 2505; and Peyton Garner of Cowan Elementary School.

This is the second year in a row that all three Teachers of the Year
selected at the Post level were also selected at the District level; one of
them was selected as the 8th State Teacher of the Year from Post 10904 in
just the last five years.

Kelli Cunningham of Cowan Elementary School was selected as the elementary
school Teacher of the Year, and Trudy Nash of Temple Baptist School the high
school Teacher of the Year, at both the Post and District levels. Will
Pannell of Westwood Middle School was selected as the Middle School Teacher
of the Year at the Post, District and State of Tennessee levels. He now
advances to the National level. Emily Ezell of Cowan Elementary School was
selected as VFW’s National Teacher of the Year in 2018.

In addition to the outstanding teachers in our area, several local students
won the annual VFW essay competitions. Katherine Clark, an 8th Grade student
at Temple Baptist School, topped 64 Patriot’s Pen essay competition
submissions. She read her essay aloud to those in attendance, who were so
inspired by her essay that she received a standing ovation.

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Andrew Hetrick, a Senior at Coffee County Central High School, was awarded
First Place in the Voice of Democracy essay competition among the 16 entries
at the Post level; and First Place at the District level, where his
submission was judged the best among the winners from ten VFW Posts. He read
his essay aloud and also received a standing ovation. Recently awarded the
rank of Eagle Scout, Hetrick also received the VFW Post 10904 Scout of the
Year Award.

Lloyd Smith closed the event with “God Bless The USA” as attendees sang

For more information and to stay current on the latest local VFW news, visit
our Facebook page and website at

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