MOWW Honors Youth Leadership Grads
by Sandi Fahy
Photo courtesy of Marilyn DiGirol
BELLEAIR - Members of the Clearwater Chapter of the Military Order of the World Wars gathered at Belleair Country Club on September 1 for lunch and a special program. Guests of honor were the 2009 graduates of the MOWW Youth Leadership Conference. They included Caitlin Hissa, Kyle Jones and Jonathon Wong of Clearwater High School; Anthony Jay Hawkins, Jaime Myers and Meghan Zipperer of Dunedin High School; Mary Jo Monk and Jordan Iuliucci of Seminole High School; Cameron Harbachuk and James Flanary of Boca Ciega High School; Donald Thomas and Corrine Valdes of Admiral Farragut Academy; Payton Briggs and Cynthia Blattenburger of Dixie Hollins HIgh School; Adam Donahue of Gibbs High School; and Ashley Dunbar of East Lake High School. The students attended conferences held in Tallahassee and Melbourne.
Following the Call to Order by MOWW Commander LTC Currie Patton, invocation by Capt. Bob Swick, Pledge Allegiance led by Mrs. Dottie Smith, Preamble read by LTC George Smith and Toast to the Flag conducted by Col. Bill Justice, Commander Patton welcomed and introduced the honorees, who were invited to address the group relative to his/her conference experience.
Over 12,000 high school students attend Youth Leadership Conferences throughout the United States each year. The conferences are a cooperative education program sponsored by The Military Order of the World Wars and supported by The National Sojourners, Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership and The Joe Foss Institute. Participants are given the opportunity to take part in discussions with authoritative spokesmen from government, industry and academia, who encourage them to think about who they are, where they are going, what kind of country they live in and what opportunities are available to them.
The Military Order of the World Wars is a patriotic nonpartisan organization which was established in 1919 to promote the welfare of our nation. The Clearwater Chapter is one of over 145 chapters across the country. The Order, which has some 11,000 members nationwide, is composed of federally recognized commissioned officers and warrant officers who are U.S. citizens of good moral character and repute now serving or have served honorably in the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Corps and the United States Public Health Service Corps. Membership also includes descendants and spouses of the above officers.