As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, Mrs. McKinsey’s English class wrote about what they are thankful for. Student Body President, Amy Frosch, kicks off the series of essays.
I am thankful for West Virginia and all the opportunities our state has provided. From West Virginia’s beautiful scenery to the organizations available here, West Virginia has been a great home.
I was not born in West Virginia, in fact, I was born in Germany. After living in this state for 13 years it would now be hard to leave. The reasons being the close knit atmosphere, the multitude of outdoor activities, and the support of community clubs and organizations.
In West Virginia, I feel safe and secure because I am surrounded by “family.” A simple trip into Walmart to grab one item for my mom inevitably leads me to run into multiple people to which I have some connection. Driving down the road, I see people I know waving at me. One time, I ran out of gas and many individuals stopped to see if I was okay. People in West Virginia are friendly and truly care about each other.
West Virginia offers thirty-seven state parks for recreational and educational use. I am thankful for these parks because they have brought my family together, and have given my friends and me free enjoyable activities. My father loves geocaching and with all the state parks we have been able to find over eight hundred caches. We now have memories such as swimming at Audra with friends, camping at Canaan, hiking up Seneca Rocks, and visiting Valley Falls that we will reminisce and laugh about for years to come.
West Virginia has an array of clubs and organizations willing to help the youth. I am thankful for the Rotary Club, West Virginia 4-H, WV Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership (HOBY), Lions Club, RAZE, Kiwanis, and the United Hospital Center Auxiliary. Each of these organizations has given me opportunities to impact my community, meet new people, and even travel the world. West Virginia clubs allowed me to grow into the person I am today (helped me stand out−not hide in the shadows of hundreds of others.) 4-H allowed me to join a state board to connect with other 4-Hers my age with the same hopes. Lions and Rotary Clubs gave me the opportunity to share the West Virginia culture in other countries. WV HOBY offered teens a leadership in service seminar.
There is no feeling like the one when “Country Roads” plays after sporting events, in the car, at the end of a high school dance, or even when I am travelling 4,000 miles away from home. Others know this song, and we connect instantly. No matter where life takes me, I will forever hold a special place in my heart for my home among the hills. I am forever thankful for West Virginia.