Eight middle and high school students received awards on February 20 in the annual American Legion Essay Contest sponsored by the Robert E. Coulter, Jr., Post and Auxiliary in La Grange.
Students competed in two categories according to their grade level. Thomas McGing, an eighth grader from Saint Cletus School, won first place in the middle school category for grades 7-8. Lyons Township High School junior Karenna Lange won first place in the high school competition.
Caroline Wuerl, an eighth grader at Saint Cletus School, took second place; Leanna Keen, an eighth grader from Saint Louise de Marillac School, won third place; and Austin Iturralde, an eighth grader from Saint John’s Lutheran School, won fourth place in the middle school category.
Three LTHS juniors, Jakub Dziza, Alex Torres, and Megan Rada won second, third, and fourth place, respectively, in the high school competition.
Students were challenged to write an essay on the topic “What does the First Amendment mean to me?” as part of a statewide contest sponsored by the American Legion organization in Illinois.
La Grange first place winners McGing and Lange will now compete with winners from across suburban Cook County. Competition will continue up the American Legion’s regional organization until the best essays in the state are chosen in June.
Students whose essays win at the state level can take home up to $1,200 in scholarship awards.
The Robert E. Coulter, Jr., Post and Auxiliary is located at 900 South La Grange Road in La Grange. Follow Auxiliary news on Facebook at “American Legion Auxiliary La Grange, Illinois.”