High School senior Holley Cunningham turns 18 today. As she has since her ninth birthday, she threw herself a birthday project instead of a party. Because it is her last birthday before going away to college, she added a special element to her annual plan — instill in other teenagers the spirit of giving. Thus, the birth of Leave a Legacy of Service: Give, Love, Serve.
The Holiday for Heroes Mail program is one of four elements to Holley’s birthday project for 2010. “It’s so important to show our military and veterans how much we appreciate what they do, and this was the best way to do it,” said Holley. She enlisted the help of the Pascagoula High School American Red Cross Club and all of the kindergarten through 12th grade students at the Pascagoula School District and Resurrection Catholic Schools. For the entire month of November, students brought in or made holiday cards for soldiers and veterans.
On December 3, she and her team of elves set up card signing posts at Downtown for the Holidays in Pascagoula, Mississippi. The next day, the altruistic teens set up at a local grocery store and the local mall. The fruits of Holley’s labor? 8,040 signed holiday cards edging her out of her bedroom as she prepares to pack them into boxes!