Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) who asked San Mateo County students to write Valentine’s Day cards to Veterans, has received over 3,000 cards from about 50 schools with writers ranging in age from two to 20 years old. The effort also involved Superintendent Anne E. Campbell, San Mateo County Office of Education, and her staff. (Below is a photo of some of the Valentines prior to delivery).

Speier stated, “The outpouring of support for our veterans has been remarkable! I am deeply touched by the heartfelt comments and beautiful art our students have created. They clearly care about the sacrifices made by our veterans.”

A Taylor middle school student created a beautiful heart-shaped card that folds open and is decorated with glued-on flowers and hearts. The message reads “Thank you! You’re bravery is very much appreciated!”

Pre-school students ages 2-4 from the child development center at the college of San Mateo worked with their teachers and created a set of cards decorated with festive foil and paper lace. ”You are our hero! We admire your courage! You are so brave!” were their messages.

Another group of youngsters the same age from the Ravenswood Child Development Center in East Palo Alto sent a box of adorable, very creative red hearts decorated as smiling faces and black accordion arms and legs. (see photo below)

A group of Redwood Shores Elementary school students cut out butterflies out of blue paper and adorned them with red lollipops.

A professor from Canada College wrote: “Dear Veteran, Thank you for thinking beyond yourself and trying to fight to protect those who are more vulnerable.”

Speier’s staff will deliver the cards to the VA Hospital in Palo Alto on Friday, February 11 and to Ft. Miley VA Hospital on Monday, February 14.

Speier said she was inspired by the tradition that syndicated newspaper columnist Ann Landers started 21 years ago when she encouraged her readers to send Valentines cards to veterans in VA facilities across the country. Millions of cars, letters and packages have been delivered to veterans ever since.

Speier sent a letter to the all San Mateo County School principals on January 27 in which she wrote: “School teachers can use this activity to educate your people about the importance of honoring veterans, especially those hospitalized.”

The office continues to receive cards.