Since her freshman year, Military Affairs Club President Paige Pokryfke has encouraged the STA community to acknowledge those serving our country overseas.
At last count, over 6,000 cards have reached our troops. These Christmas and Easter messages, along with over 3,000 treats baked by the club members--cookies, brownies, and rice crispy bars, serve as a small token of our appreciation.
At the entrance to Raider home football games, the club routinely mans a table providing pens and cards so the fans can express their gratitude.
Since her father works as Director of Airport Operations at Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport, he has alerted Paige to several airport events such as the North Perry Airport Fly-in where club members informed visitors to their table about the club and made cards available for messages to the troops. Additionally, students representing the club encouraged attendees at the STA Veteran's Concert, St. Gregory Catholic Church, Boy Scouts of America meetings, and Raider Softball and Baseball Hit-A-Thons to pen their thanks; and the club took over from there.
Having received responses to the cards, Paige said, "I didn't realize that something so small like sending a card could have such an impact on someone's life. I don't want the troops to ever feel forgotten."
On April 8, 2017, the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport hosted the biannual Honor Flight for veterans. After being flown to Washington, D.C., to see the national memorials and then flown back, the veterans received a warm welcome home from STA students with a sign that read, "St. Thomas honors all who served!"
Other officers of the club include Phoenix Tabasso, Vice President; Gabriella Nori, Secretary; Veronica Casce, Treasurer; and Sonia Singh, Historian. Mr. Dennis Frisco moderates the group.
To connect with as many former Raiders as possible, the Military Affairs Club aspires to identify STA graduates serving now or having served in the past in order to acknowledge their dedication to our country.
Over Memorial Day Weekend, the Military Affairs Club set up a table at Bokamper's to collect letters from patrons. Owner Kim Bokamper and Ft. Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler came by to support the cause!