By Tamsa Mo9_IMG_4259ndovics

Students at Randall Middle School, located at 16510 Fishhawk Blvd. in Lithia, honored those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001 with a special tribute by creating a memorial on the school’s lawn.

As has been the case in the past, in order to create memorial markers, the students researched and wrote biographies for each of the 2,977 victims who have died on 9/11 at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in Shanksville, Pa.

The students, through their Social Studies classes, placed the markers on the school’s front lawn in order to form an American flag.

“Taking part in this project helped me understand the extent of what happened on 9/11,” said 13-year-old Randall student Julia Larue.

Pleased with the students participation, Randall teacher Kristy Verdi spoke highly of what was accomplished when she said, “Through their participation and classroom instruction, our students learn about the causes as well as the immediate and long range impact that the events of September 11, 2001 had on our nation.”

FishHawk Ranch by Newland Communities, one of more than 30 communities the NASH-Newland partnership owns together in 11 states across the United States, was happy to sponsor the annual event, which began in 2009.

“We are pleased to be able to purchase the reusable memorial markers as well as provided funds for the school to build the memorial and through the students’ hard work, have a share in honoring and remembering the victims of that sad day in our history,” said Newland Communities Representative Lynda McMorrow.

The annual Randall memorial has not gone without notice over the years as several local and national organizations including Remember, Honor, Support Foundation (based in Tampa Bay) have honored this project, while TrueHero.org chose the memorial as its national Middle School Project of the Year in 2014.

In 2012, the national organization Kids Voting USA recognized the memorial with its Impact Award.

The Randall 9/11 memorial was on display for four days and enjoyed a steady flow of visitors from around the community.

For more details about FishHawk Ranch, go to www.fishhawkranch.com.