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Moreno students send sympathy letters to recent tornado victims
by Jason Collins
May 24, 2013 | 1645 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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Jenny Cardenas is one of about a dozen Moreno Middle School students sending letters to victims of the Oklahoma tornado. Behind her are her teachers, Martin Garza and Rebecca Vasquez. See also a special video presentation online at www.mySouTex.com
Jason Collins photo Jenny Cardenas is one of about a dozen Moreno Middle School students sending letters to victims of the Oklahoma tornado. Behind her are her teachers, Martin Garza and Rebecca Vasquez. See also a special video presentation online at www.mySouTex.com
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Students from the class of Martin Garza and Rebecca Vasquez at Moreno Middle School wrote letters to the victims of the Oklahoma tornado. Students sending the letters were Jose Lopez, Shay Syester, Lupe Altamirano, Aimee Loya, Jordan Gonzalez, Tavia Lemon, Sarai Hinojosa, Raelynn Arrisola, Mercedes Benavidez, Jason Habetz, Johnathan Gamboa and Jenny Cardenas.
Jason Collins photo
Students from the class of Martin Garza and Rebecca Vasquez at Moreno Middle School wrote letters to the victims of the Oklahoma tornado. Students sending the letters were Jose Lopez, Shay Syester, Lupe Altamirano, Aimee Loya, Jordan Gonzalez, Tavia Lemon, Sarai Hinojosa, Raelynn Arrisola, Mercedes Benavidez, Jason Habetz, Johnathan Gamboa and Jenny Cardenas. Jason Collins photo
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I wish I could help every single one of you but one person can only do so much for so many people. — Jenny Angela Cardenas wrote in a letter to the residents of the tornado devastated areas of Oklahoma.

This Moreno Middle School seventh-grader empathizes with the loss of family.

“I can only imagine how they feel but they cannot ever give up on what they believe in,” she said. “I wanted to tell them to keep their heads high.”

I have lost loved ones just like you might have. I once lost everything myself.

You always got to believe that the Lord will never let you down.

Just keep your head held high and be glad you are still alive.

Jenny was one of about a dozen students to write letters to the victims of the disaster.

“I love writing,” Jenny said. “It is a way I can express myself. Whatever comes into my head, I write.”

...I cannot imagine the pain you are going through. Never let or put yourself down. Things will get better.

Martin Garza, one of her teachers and originator of the assignment, said he was on the way to work when he heard Kid Kraddick on the radio talking about the people of Oklahoma.

“I wanted to look for somewhere I could donate money.

“I thought, ‘No, money is not good enough.’

“I want to do something better than that.”

“Our kids have been writing beautiful things the past few weeks, so I brought it to them and they ran with it.”

A letter by Aimee Loya, another of the students, brought a tear to the eye of Joni Barber, school principal.

“This is what made me cry when I read this. I said, ‘No you are a whole lot more,’” Barber said.

The words Aimee wrote — I am nothing but a teenage girl.

Barber said, “I cried because I know where they are coming from. They are opening up.”

And I can do nothing but pray for every one of you. I know many of you lost your homes, valuable possessions and possibly loved ones that you can’t get back.

I know it’s hard.

I know you’re hurting and I know that you just want to give into everything coming down on you.

But you have to stay strong.

These sympathetic words written by Aimee are almost contradictory to the persona she shows.

Another teacher, Rebecca Vasquez, said, “She puts on the exterior that is all tough.

“But there is a strong, inspirational woman starting to grow in that child.”

Jenna said that she hopes those who read her letter find the hope in her words.

In 2009 her father fell victim to a stroke and became paralyzed on the left side of his body. He has been in a nursing home ever since.

“If I feel that much pain, I can only imagine how they feel if they lost people close to them.”

Jason Collins is the editor at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 121, or at editor@mySouTex.com.
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