DTRTlogo“PGPD Honors Five Students for Doing the Right Thing”

On Thursday, February 7, 2013 the Punta Gorda Police Department’s “Do the Right Thing” program honored five children for their good deeds.

Our first nominee for the month of February comes to us from the Punta Gorda Middle School. Please welcome Tristen Boley, the son of Amanda and Ryan Boley. Tristen is in the 6th grade at PGMS.

On October 27, 2012 Punta Gorda Police Detective Terry Cochran was working the Haunting on the Harbor Event in downtown Punta Gorda. He noticed a child waiving to get his attention. The child identified himself as Tristen Boley a sixth grader at PuntaGordaMiddle School. Tristen advised Detective Cochran that he had located a wallet lying on the pavement just inside the front gate of the event. Tristen stated he did not see who dropped it, but several people had walked by the wallet prior to him picking it up. He stated he just wanted to make sure it got back to the rightful owner as he and his family were preparing to leave the event. Tristen then introduced Detective Cochran to his funny looking family: they were all dressed as clowns. After receiving the wallet Detective Cochran began to inspect it for owner information and observed it to have cash, credit cards and personal documents inside. As he was taking inventory, the owner a resident of North Port, Florida approached him in apparent distress as she had just discovered her wallet was missing and thought it had been lost with little chance of finding it. She was relieved and amazed that it had been found and turned over to police so quickly with all of the contents still present. Tristen did the right thing by collecting and returning a significant piece of property through the police department to the rightful owner.  The owner was ecstatic to have it back and there is no doubt she has a good memory of the City of Punta Gorda due to Tristen’s actions. Detective Cochran would like to personally thank Tristen for making the City of Punta Gorda a great place to live and visit, by him demonstrating how to do the right thing.

Tristen, we would also like to thank you for your thoughtfulness. Your actions made all of us look good.

When not doing the right thing, Tristen likes to fish. He also enjoys playing with remote controlled helicopters, football and hunting.

Tristen has been a member of the Cub Scouts and is a very good friend to an elderly neighbor; he helps her with some tasks she finds it difficult to do, like taking out her garbage. Tristen maintains a solid A/B level work in school.

Our next young lady is a 4th grader at Sallie Jones Elementary School by the name of Rachel Dunleavy. Rachel is the daughter of Amy and Brian Dunleavy.

Following the events left behind by Hurricane Sandy, Rachel had an empty feeling in her heart for all of the victims. She single handedly organized a collection to assist some of the victims. Rachel went to her principal, Mrs. Hoke, and got permission to collect back packs, toys and supplies to be sent to a school in Massapequa, New York. Rachel created an action plan and frequently touched base with the administration and the students to make certain things were moving along as she hoped. She also handed out fliers in the community to gain a larger base of support. Once the drive was over, Rachel had between 30 and 40 large boxes of items that needed to be transported from Florida to Long Island. Once again, on her own, Rachel contacted a moving company and was able to get the items on one of their trucks for free. As a final action, Rachel arranged for her father to visit the school which received the supplies to make certain everything was correct.

Mrs. Hoke informed me that Rachel just received a large envelope of thank you notes from her new friends on Long Island. Isn’t that wonderful?

Last week, Rachel was recognized as a speaker at our own EventsCenter when the “Leader in Me” conference held it’s symposium.

Rachel thank you so much for being a leader who has a vision toward helping others.

Rachel is an A/B student at Sallie Jones. She is in the Sallie Jones Chorus and participates with the Girls on the Run jogging program.  She loves to ride horses and participate in barrel racing and is a member of the Punta Gorda Horseman’s Association. She is also active in the 4H.

 Please extend a big congratulations to Samson DelTorto, our next nominee. Samson is an 8th grader at L.A.AngerMiddle School and is the son of Thomas and Geraldine DelTorto.

We are recognizing Samson for his graciousness volunteering to play “Taps” when the entire 8th grade from L.A.AingerMiddle School visited the travelling Vietnam Veterans Memorial recently. Sampson wanted to play it in honor of his family members who served in the military and for all those whose names’ are on The Wall. He played it, and all those who were there at the time had tears in their eyes (especially the veterans who were in attendance). He did a fantastic, meaningful job.

Samson, our thanks for showing concern for those who lost their lives defending the freedom we enjoy each and every day.

Samson is a straight A student at L.A.AingerMiddle School. He has a very creative mind and loves to build and invent things. He volunteers at the Elks Club and is the type of young man who is always ready and willing to help anyone with a need.

Let’s return to the Punta Gorda Middle School again to meet our next nominee. Please help me welcome Christopher Pappas, a 6th grader and the son of Heidi and Charles Pappas.

The person nominating Christopher had this to say: On December 11, 2012 I was out to lunch with my husband and two little boys. Ian is 4 1/2 years old and Ryan is 9 weeks old. I took both boys to the family restroom where they have this wonderful bowl of antibacterial hand scrub at the sink. Ian and I both used it & I was sure to take off my diamond wedding band before using it. I laid my ring on the sink and of course left it behind. It wasn’t until I arrived home about an hour later that I realized what I had done. I immediately called the restaurant in a panic and the manager looked but my ring was nowhere to be found. He even watched an hour of video to try to figure out who may have found it. Soon after that the manager got a call that someone had found my ring! Christopher’s Father returned the ring to me the next day and just proved to me that there are good, honest people out there! Thank you Christopher for Doing the Right Thing!

Christopher, it certainly makes us excited when we meet someone as honest as you. If only your values could be passed on to each and every person you come in contact with, what a better place this world would be. Congratulations on doing the right thing.

Christopher loves flag football, soccer and basketball. He was second in the state’s Elk Club soccer shoot out recently. He gets good grades in school and is a rip stick rider, which I hear is like an advanced skate board.

It is now my pleasure to introduce you to our overall winner for the month of February. Please welcome Scott Greenwald, an 8th grader at the Academy. His guardians Melissa and Chad Moritz and his Aunt Sarah and Uncle David Pierre are in the audience on his behalf today.

The person nominating Scott had this to say:

Scott is a student that has overcome great home difficulties. He lives with his best friend’s family and makes them proud every day. He has chosen to participate in the PASS program to help him catch up with his education. Scott became behind in school through no fault of his own. Since beginning the PASS program, Scott has been present everyday, but for one day when he was ill. He is studying hard to complete 8th and 9th grade credits in one year. His efforts are paying off. The 1st quarter he made A Honor Roll and is expected to make the A Honor Roll again this quarter. He exemplifies the work ethic and attitude one witnesses in individuals that become inspirational to others dealing with difficulties in life. Scott is always kind to everyone and ALWAYS respectful to any adult with whom he interacts. Scott’s honesty, thoughtfulness, and ability to be flexible to different needs and situations shows his maturity at a young age. Scott exemplifies the reason Charlotte County Public Schools, and teachers like myself, find at-risk programs to be so important to our community. Students like Scott are the reason we become teachers.

Scott it seems like you have certainly won over the support of your teachers and the adults you come in contact with. Congratulations on such a wonderful job.

When not trying to complete two school years in one, Scott likes Lacrosse, football, and, ice skating. He has a wonderful working knowledge of computers and loves to fix them. He also has an interest in drafting and skateboarding.