‘A heart of gold … drive like no other’
Freedom HS senior Kerry Callaghan was selected to receive the Travelers Protective Association of America’s Altruism Award on April 6 for her natural leadership abilities and her mature, selfless nature both in the classroom and in the community. Loretta Lohenitz, a counselor at Freedom, spoke on Callaghan’s behalf, saying Callaghan has “a heart of gold and a drive, spirit and influence like no other.”
The TPA Altruism Award honors those with a selfless concern for the well-being of others, and the staff at Freedom HS unanimously determined that Callaghan was an incredible example of altruism at their high school. Callaghan will plan to attend University of South Carolina in the Fall.
Callaghan wanted to reach out to every single freshman at Freedom and let them know that “someone cares.” This drive to reach out to everyone ultimately led to the creation of the Freshman Welcoming Committee. This committee led by Callaghan and supported by students, staff and administrators works during the summer to go door to door and personally welcome each incoming freshman with a ticket to a home football game. In addition to welcoming new students, Callaghan made sure to treasure the thoughts and memories of seniors by interviewing each graduating student and placing these interviews and memories inside a time capsule to be opened at future high school reunions.
Callaghan is also on the soccer team, student council, miniThon, National Honor Society and is involved with the Special Olympics and Riot Squad. She’s managed to do all of this while holding a 4.2 GPA, a part-time job and continuing with her passion for Irish Dancing for 14 years.
Northampton County Court of Common Pleas Judge Samuel P. Murray was a guest speaker at the award event. Judge Murray presides over civil and criminal trials and is an Associate Judge of Domestic Relations. Judge Murray thanked Callaghan and her fellow peers for their service and dedication to the community and for serving as an outstanding example for her peers to follow. Judge Murray offered well wishes and career advice for the recipients in their future endeavors.
The TPA Post L in the Lehigh Valley is a national nonprofit organization and the largest post of the Pennsylvania division. TPA also has a Post L Deaf and Near Deaf Trust Fund and at this year’s altruism event, a check was presented to Liberty High School Senior Carlo Perugini. Perugini, a wrestler at Liberty High school recently won the District 11 Class 3A championship title.