For her eighth birthday in April, then second grade St Rose of Lima School student Ryann Heim planted flowers with her class near a statue on the school’s grounds to honor the 26 people killed at Sandy Hook School on 12/14.
It was the first time Ryann had done anything like that for her birthday, she said this week.
When construction started at the school just a few months later, the flowers were removed. A few weekends ago, St Rose of Lima School second grade teacher Erin Yost had a conversation with a friend about “Ryann’s Flowers,” as the pansies planted in April were popularly referenced.
The friend, a member of the family that owns Proven Winners, Pleasant View Gardens in New Hampshire, was so impressed with Ryann’s efforts last school year, that the company set up donations of flowers to be gifted to St Rose of Lima School from Proven Winners.
The flowers — red, orange, and yellow mums — arrived at St Rose of Lima last Wednesday, the 12th anniversary of 9/11. Ms Yost said one student pointed out the arrival of the flowers made what would have been a sad day of remembrance a bit brighter.
“She did something nice,” said Ms Yost, “and kindness comes back.”
Ms Yost’s current second grade class helped Ryann plant the new flowers on Friday, September 13. The new plants have been installed along a walkway, where they will not be disturbed by the ongoing construction.
Holes were dug before the second grade students made their way outside, and Ms Yost and Ryann demonstrated how to remove the mums from the pots to place them in the ground. Ms Yost also showed the students how to cover the plants with dirt and pat the covering down to complete the process.
Ms Yost said the day was a demonstration on how one kind act can inspire consecutive kind acts.