Story and Photos by Rosemary Leonetti.
After Hurricane Sandy hit Long Island, Long Beach High School Spanish teacher Francis Ventura had been sharing stories of the Long Beach community’s plight with her sister, Wendy Cruz, a bilingual teacher at Brandenberg Elementary School in Irving, Texas. When Cruz passed those stories on to her students, they were so touched that they decided to do what they could to lift the spirits of their Long Beach counterparts. They wrote letters, made a video, collected school supplies and books, and even donated their lunch money — $7.75 in quarters — to help Long Beach recover.
Ventura, who had been donating her time to help in the Long Beach recovery effort, was touched by the generosity of her sister’s students. She shared the letters with her high school Spanish students, who were so moved that they plan to send a thank you video and letters to show their appreciation to the young philanthropists.
“Me siento muy triste — me duele el corazón,” said one note, which means, “I feel very sad — my heart aches for you.”
Another note simply said, “I’m sorry for the Sandy y’all had!”
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