Story by Steve Parker
Yokosuka, Japan – Recently more than 60 fifth grade students from Ikego Elementary School (IES) under Fleet Activities (FLEACT), Yokosuka visited Seragi Elderly Home in Ikego. This year marks the third trip in what has become an annual visit at IES, a traditional visit that is looked forward to each year by students of IES doing the visiting as well as the elderly residents of Seragi.
The visit occurred before the Christmas break for IES students, Dec. 18, 2015. According to Shannon Marchetti, IES fifth grade teacher, the students sang Christmas carols as well as two Japanese songs they had studied in preparation for their visit. Marchetti remarked, “The visit to Seragi Nursing Home is a very memorable field trip for our students. Many of us have come to know how lonely residents of nursing homes can feel and how sometimes the smallest acts of kindness can make the biggest difference in someone’s day.”
Marchetti also stated the elderly residents joined in singing with the students on the classic and familiar “Silent Night.” One of the IES students in Marchetti’s fifth grade class, Tiga Martin, said of his experience, “It makes me feel good to know I did something nice. When one of the residents starting crying as we sang Silent Night, it made me tear up as well.”