Sonnen wins regional essay contest
Summit Academy 8th grade student Jessie Sonnen has won first place in the Northwest region in the Fleet Reserve Association essay contest.  Her essay will be sent to the national competition.  The theme for the essay was "What the United States Flag Stands For".  The competition was open to 7th-12th grades.  Her winning essay follows:
The Flag of Americaís Past, Present, and Future
By Jessie Sonnen
The United Statesí flag is a reminder of our past, present, and future. It tells the story of the past; it lives in the present and carries the hope of the future.
The flag of Americaís past has flown through many hardships and trials. It was nearly torn in two at the Civil War.  Battered and beaten it stood firm through the World Wars.  The flag stands for the soldiers who battled for their country. The flag marks the grave of those who gave their life for others. The flag stands erect, like the soldiers who stood strong for their country. The threads of the flag are the bridge of Americaís past to itís present.
The flag of Americaís present leads us as we learn from the past to avoid problems in the present. The flag is the loving, teaching hand that guides the nation on her path. Not once has it lead us astray. By itís guidance we have learned not to make the same mistakes of the past. The flag has lead the nation faithfully for many years. As the flag is unfurled now, we hope that it will remain flying in the future.
The flag of Americaís future carries the dreams of many upon itís striped shoulders. The navy blue and the stars remind us that the sky is the limit, and the red and white paths leading to it are for sacrifice and purity. The flag tells us to pursue our dreams and follow them into the future, guided by the light of the flag.
When a flag has served itís time, it is burned. When it is burned it does not die, rather it lives on as the spirit of America.; just as the past of America never dies, rather it lives on in the present and future.

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