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Sterling school sending package to Marines

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012 1:15 a.m. CST
(Philip Marruffo/
Hailey Bielema, in Melissa Kyarsgaard's first-grade class at Franklin Elementary School in Sterling, makes a card for soldiers at Camp Leatherneck-Camp Bastion in Helmand Province in Afghanistan. Kyarsgaard's brother-in-law, Marine Master Gunnery Sgt. Bob Mena, 42, of Rock Falls, is stationed at the camp, where two men were killed in an attack last month.
(Philip Marruffo/
Gustavo Lopez, left, Landen Derrer and Riley Ebbens help pack the care package.

STERLING – A Franklin Elementary School teacher and her students are sending a care package to Marines at Camp Leatherneck-Camp Bastion in Afghanistan, the site of a deadly attack last month.

Melissa Kyarsgaard has been collecting Chex mix, Snickers and coffee from staff members; she will send it Wednesday.

“We’re sending snacks, stuff that they obviously don’t have access to,” she said.

Her brother-in-law, Marine E9 Master Gunnery Sgt. Bob Mena, 42, of Rock Falls, is stationed at the camp. One of his men was one of the two killed in the attack, Kyarsgaard said.

Her first-graders made cards and pictures Monday to send along with the package.

“Nothing makes you laugh more than a first-grade picture,” Kyarsgaard said.

Michael Knight, 7, drew a figure in green he called “an Army guy.”

“It’s really good,” he said of military members’ service. “They’re doing something really nice.”

Hailey Bielema, 6, made a card with an American flag.

“Thank you for ptetius [protecting us],” it read.

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