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Platteview Central recently learned that eighth grader Samuel Verdoni took first place in the state of Nebraska for his Veterans of Foreign Wars essay in the annual Patriot's Pen contest.
Verdoni's essay, based on a prompt asking, "What Makes America Great?" bested hundreds of essays across the state to earn the top prize.
Starting at the local level, Verdoni first won his Local VFW Post 143 and a $100 prize. From there, Verdoni won the District 10 contest by beating out other top essays from neighboring towns and cities. Lastly, Verdoni proceeded to the state competition, where he earned the top distinction for his writing, earning $1,000 for that honor.
Verdoni is now headed to nationals, where his essay has a chance to earn him the top prize of $5,000. "Samuel is a terrific student who represents everything great about our school and community. We are very proud of him and his most recent accomplishments," stated Mr. Johnson, his school principal.