Nassau Adopts Lynnhaven Elementary School

Story Number: NNS061219-03Release Date: 12/19/2006 1:56:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Steven Smith, USS Nassau Public Affairs

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- USS Nassau (LHA 4) Sailors spent time volunteering at Lynnhaven Elementary School on Nov. 30.

Lynnhaven Elementary School has a significant relationship with the Sailors of USS Nassau that began during the latter part of the 1980s, and until recently had become almost non existent.

Due to the recent efforts of school principal Katherine Everret, Chaplain David M. McElwain and Nassau's Commanding Officer, Capt. John E. Roberti, Nassau was able to rekindle the partnership.

"We are very excited to have Nassau as our partners in education, and we look forward to our children having one-on-one involvement and positive role models," said Karen Dragon, a Resource Reading teacher at Lynnhaven Elementary.

Being a positive role model is not the only thing that is needed at Lynnhaven Elementary School; Sailors did some minor landscaping and gardening a few months prior, and upon their recent visit, were presented with a poster made by the children that showed their thanks.

"It was overwhelming seeing the children and how much they truly appreciated the amount of effort we put into fixing their courtyard," said Intelligence Specialist 2nd Class Aubrey Murman. "And with the amount of people we have volunteering, I really look forward to doing as much as I can for these kids."

According to McElwain Nassau Sailors will help Lynnhaven Elementary in a number of ways. Some of the Sailors will work directly with the children and assist them academically in math, reading, and science, others will function as mentors, and some of Nassau's information technicians will assist Lynnhaven's staff with the school's webpage.

While in port, Nassau Sailors will volunteer their time at the school on a weekly basis. While deployed, Nassau plans to continue the relationship with the school.

"When we deploy we anticipate that we will continue to keep in contact with Lynnhaven Elementary," said McElwain. "We plan on sending the kids updates on our travels as well as photographs so they can get a better idea of the world around them."

McElwain continued saying he hopes the constant contact with the children will make a difference.

"Lynnhaven is a high-need school and we hope to have a positive impact on the lives of the children," said McElwain. "By volunteering our time and working one-on-one with the kids, we hope to help them see that they can achieve their goals and dreams."

For related news, visit the USS Nassau (LHA 4) Navy NewsStand page at

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