Homer 33C Creative writing assignment leads to correspondence with Korean War veteran

News Release

Homer CCSD 33C

Goodings Grove   Luther J. Schilling   William E. Young   William J. Butler

Hadley Middle   Homer Jr. High


Contact: Charla Brautigam, Communications/Public Relations Manager

cbrautigam@homerschools.org | 708-226-7628


For Immediate Release:

Oct. 19, 2016


Creative writing assignment leads to correspondence with Korean War veteran


A creative writing assignment has led to a special correspondence with a Korean War veteran.


In September, Hadley Middle School teacher Rose Bumber showed students a documentary on the Honor Flight Chicago program and asked them to write letters to the World War II and Korean War veterans who would be traveling to Washington, D.C. shortly for a day of honor and remembrance.


“I told the students that they might hear back from a veteran,” said Bumber, “but that’s not why we were doing it.


“We did it to honor them and to say ‘Thank you,’” she added. “I just wanted the kids to feel the joy in saying ‘Thank you” to these very special men and women who sacrificed for our country.”


The students wrote from the heart, thanking veterans for their service and sacrifice.

One student wrote:


“Dear Veteran,

Thank you so much for serving our country and fighting for America. Thank you for fighting for our freedom. You are very brave and courageous for serving in the military, and leading us to freedom. You are one of the many people in the United States who had the courage and bravery to serve our country. Your heroism is very amazing and I appreciate everything you’ve done to help our country.”

The sixth-grader and her classmates were tickled when Korean War veteran Lee Mazur wrote back.


“I want to thank you for the thought you put into the letter I received from you,” he said. “I opened the envelope marked `MAIL CALL’ which was presented to me on the airplane during the return Honor Flight to Washington, D.C.”


He went on to explain how he and 100 other Korean War veterans were visiting memorials in Virginia and Washington, D.C. with the 75th Honor Flight when he was handed her letter.


He described how fire trucks greeted their airplane as they arrived back home, using their water cannons to spray water over the airplane. As they disembarked, Gov. Bruce Rauner and an Army general were there to shake each veteran’s hand.


“There was a long line of saluting Army, Navy and Marines welcoming us back with a salute and handshake,” Mazur wrote. “The entire Terminal 2 had over a thousand people, family with children, scout troops and many other veterans. All in all … a day to remember for the rest of my life.”


He enclosed two photographs of himself — one taken (in uniform) in 1951 and one taken near the Washington Monument during his Honor Flight visit to Washington, D.C.


“When I read the letter to both of my Creative Writing classes, the sixth-graders were in awe,” said Bumber. “You could see the look of happiness on their faces.


“I’m very proud that my students participated in this program,” she added. “And given the opportunity, I will do it again in the future.”


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