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Distinguished Finalist

Kaitlyn Gilmour

Anchorage, Alaska

Kaitlyn Gilmour, 18, of Anchorage, Alaska, a senior at Denali PEAK Correspondence/Homeschool, co-founded a project with her mother called “Comfort Covers” to send more than 200 handmade, personalized blankets to deployed soldiers, veterans and their families; the initiative also involved collecting more than 1,000 pounds of care packages that were sent via a military plane and delivered by helicopters to bases in Afghanistan. Over several years, the effort evolved to send blankets and care packages to children in hospitals, homeless people, and others in need of moral support.