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Culver Elementary students make valentines for Oregon Veterans' Home residents

 - Culver Elementary School students made Valentine's Day cards for military veterans in resident homes affected by COVID-19.

"Thank you for keeping us safe," "Thank you for your service," "Happy Valentine's Day," the colorful greeting cards say.

The cheerful drawings with hearts, stars and flowers are sure to bring smiles to lonely military veterans.

Culver Elementary School students created these valentines for residents of the Oregon Veterans' Homes in The Dalles and Lebanon.

"COVID-19 hit the Oregon Veterans' Homes in The Dalles and Lebanon hard," said Jefferson County Veterans' Service Officer Laura Moore.

She noted that COVID hit the Lebanon veterans home early in the pandemic, resulting in eight deaths, and The Dalles home had three deaths.

"For such a small community, this is a lot and took a huge emotional toll," Moore said. "We have Jefferson County residents who live in OVH The Dalles and OVH Lebanon. We also work with the directors at both homes."

Recognizing that it has been a difficult year, Moore had encouraged local schools and organizations to donate valentine cards to the veterans to help raise the spirits of the residents and staff at Oregon Veterans' Homes and let them know they have not been forgotten.

Culver School District Superintendent Stefanie Garber encouraged Culver Elementary teachers to have their students participate in the project.

Moore received the cards from a handful of classes and mailed them to veterans in the care homes last week.

"Nothing touches the heart like a handmade card from a child," Moore said. "We very much appreciate Culver Elementary taking the time to educate their students about veterans who have served and allowing them the time and space to create a beautiful card that will mean the world to the veteran who receives it."

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