Matt Delph has made it his mission to help remember
Delph, a junior at Comsewogue High School in Port Jefferson Station, is the founder of "Operation: Don't Forget Our Vets," a program for kids to create homemade thank-you cards for elderly veterans at the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook.
The effort started as a Cub Scouts project for Delph seven years ago and has since expanded to all six district schools.
"It's important for veterans to know what they did wasn't for nothing - it's appreciated," said Delph, 16, who conceived the idea with his late grandfather, a Marine who served in a tank battalion during World War II.
To create the cards, Delph said he gets permission each year from Superintendent Shelley Saffer and then sends letters to each school's principal encouraging classes to participate in honor of Veterans Day. This year, Delph also visited the veterans home to help visually impaired residents play bingo.
Delph is a member of the high school's soccer team and is treasurer for his class. He is working on an Eagle Scout project to create a meditation garden this spring at the Infant Jesus Roman Catholic Church in Port Jefferson.