After reading a wonderful email from Mr. Silver at Oak Park and River Forest High School, I realized there are many teachers in town who helped shape my daughter into the loving, caring and intelligent young woman she has become, so I would like to thank some of you.

Thank you, St. Edmund School, Sister Colette Mary (retired), Kakie and Ms. Cynthia for noticing her abilities at a young age and fostering them. You loved both my girls wholeheartedly and I thank you for that.

Thanks to District 97’s Brooks Middle School. Your programs expanded my daughter’s horizons. Your teachers mentored her in class and out. Thank you, Larry Gramaldi, for taking her under your wing in volleyball and teaching her more than just a sport. You taught her how to be a mentor and leader. I am sure it is no coincidence that she wants to be a science teacher. You are family now.

To Oak Park and River Forest High School — what a wonderful experience we have had at your school with Tricia and her older sister, Abi. Your vast array of classes and programs leave little to be desired.

A special thanks to:

The Snowball Program for teaching both of my children that you can have fun without drinking and drugging, and not be considered dorky.

To Milo (Cindy Milojevic) for noticing Tricia’s natural leadership skills and including her in your student mentoring program, as well as your open-door policy for the kids. It’s comforting to know that your child always has someone she can go to if needed.

To all of her teachers and coaches, especially Mr. Bell, Ms. Christina Smith, Mr. Silver, Mr. Alexander and Mr. Gonzalez. You kept her challenged and entertained this year, which can be difficult with someone on the cusp of graduation.

To the University of Arizona, I hope you realize quickly what an amazing young woman and student you have in your freshman class. I hope you can rise to the challenge that is Tricia.

Thank you, Oak Park.

Poppy Vogel
Oak Park

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