As you know, we get emails and letters from former students from time to time. I got a short one from a former student just a week or so ago. She wanted me to pass it on to our front line staff. With her permission I am also putting it in this blog post. Here is what she wrote–unedited:
Hey Calo Today is my prom!!!!!!!!!!! ill send pictures later this week!!!! I have adopted a 10 year old Boxer from a family I know who’s moving away. Her name is Samantha but we call her sam or sammy. ill send pictures of her also later this week. I have my license now. I heard the shake it song today and it made me think of the good o’l times on the boat! I am still looking for work and have not been so lucky finding a job although i could be trying harder than i am. My parents and i are getting along much better from when i first got home. My dad and I are closer than we’ve been in a REALLY long time. I hope all is well there and i miss all of you guys. When you see ranger give him lots of love 🙂
I know it is not a long email but it is just the right length to give all of us at Calo a picture of how this young lady is doing. It is hard to express how happy it makes me to read her words. You see, I (with one other staff member) was the one who picked her up from another program about two years ago. Officials from that other program had brought her to the airport to meet us and we escorted her to Missouri. She was dressed scantily and had quite an attitude. She came across as angry, entitled, and emotionally dangerous. I was alarmed for her and hopeful she would decide to make some changes. Her stay with us was difficult but ultimately productive and she has blossomed beautifully. She does not resemble the young lady I met at the airport at all. She still has an intense personality but it is channeled in all the right ways. She is intelligent and thoughtful. She should be very proud of what she has accomplished and the wonderful young lady she has become.