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Amazing Kids! of the Month

Amazing Kids! is proud to highlight the Amazing Kids! of the Month!

Each month, we showcase kids who are accomplishing amazing things. We hope that by telling their special stories, we will inspire other kids to accomplish their own amazing achievements.

Amazing Kids! of the Month for May, 2007:
Amazing Young Environmentalist, Eric Blend;
Buckhannon, West Virginia

Amazing Kid! of the Month, May 2007:  Amazing Young Environmentalist Eric Blend

  Amazing Young Environmentalist, Eric Blend

Quotes of the Month:

"Previously I had decided to major in business and computers, but found that my heart in with the outdoors. I have been motivated to make a difference and have found that one person can be a catalyst for change.

"Several of my friends joined my project, and I hope my actions will influence others to volunteer in any area.

~ Amazing Young Environmentalist Eric Blend, age 17

The May Amazing Kids! of the Month:

Have you ever gone fishing, canoeing, or simply jumped into a lake on a hot summer day, only to find you were swimming in trash-infested waters?  What would you do if that happened to you? 

Take a look at our May Amazing Kids! of the Month story below and get ready to be amazed and inspired, as you read about Eric Blend, an amazing young environmentalist who is as passionate about protecting the environment as he is about having fun in the great outdoors!

Don't forget: If you, or a young person (or persons!) you know, has an amazing project you are involved in, or a special skill, talent or ability you want to tell the world about, be sure to let Amazing Kids! know about it! Simply complete our Amazing Kids! of the Month award online nomination form, ( or email us!

Table of Contents

About Eric Blend
Get Involved!
Related Links

About Eric Blend

Amazing Young Environmentalist Eric Blend and friend
Eric Blend with
friend, and
fellow river
clean up crew member, Michael Ellis

Eric is a seventeen-year-old from Buckhannon, West Virginia, and like many young people, he enjoys being outdoors, especially fishing and canoeing. Because of his love for Nature, it is upsetting to him when he sees trash and old tires floating in the water.

Earlier this year, Eric went to Conservation Camp and Forest Industries Camp, where he learned about the detrimental effects of littering on the environment and its wildlife. He was happy to discover that the Department of Natural Resources would dispose of old tires, should volunteers be willing to remove them from the rivers!

As a result, his time spent at the camps, in conjunction with additional information he had learned about how kids and teens can help clean up the environment subsequently inspired him to do his own river cleanups with the help of several of his friends, Michael Ellis, Kevin Sturm, and Connor McCauley.

Unfortunately, tires weren't the only things he and his friends found polluting the water.  Eric says:

“Some [additional] things we found were: campaigning signs, golf balls, construction cones, cans, bottles, a metal drum, side paneling, and much more.  After looking at the huge pile of junk in the back of my truck, I was relieved that it was out of the river and felt very proud.”

In just two short weeks, Eric has removed about fifty-five tires in a two and a half mile section of the Buckhannon River that flows behind his house!   His heroic efforts has made Eric somewhat of a local hero. Eric received an award from his hometown mayor for his efforts to help clean up and preserve the environment.

Amazing Kid! of the Month May 2007 Eric Blend with friend Kevin Sturm standing next to truck full of tires and trash they removed from a local river
Eric Blend with friend Kevin Sturm stand next to
a truckload of tires removed from the Buckhannon River

Eric says:

West Virginia is a very beautiful state with numerous streams and rivers.  I love the outdoors and am an avid fisherman.  I noticed countless tires littering the Buckhannon River that flows behind my house and decided to do something about it. I didn’t realize I was doing that much until it captured the attention of the others.”

Needless to say, Eric’s accomplishments not only changed the rivers and the environment, they have also changed him as a person. For now, Eric wants to continue removing litter that is not only polluting rivers but also endangering wildlife habitats. In the near future, Eric hopes to attend West Virginia University and major in Wildlife Management or Fisheries Management. His wish is to become “a conservation officer or work in any career where I can help be an advocate for the environment.”

For kids and teens like Eric who are interested in helping make a difference in improving the environment of their own local communities, Eric comments:  “Why wouldn’t you want to do something like this?” he questions. “On a hot summer day, who doesn’t want to jump into a cool river and help the environment in the same way?”

Eric admits that “It’s also awesome to get compliments from everyone because they have seen the results in the river as well as reading about it in the newspaper.”  But most of all, Eric says he has been “motivated to make a difference” and reminds others that “one person can be a catalyst for change.”

His advice for others who’d like to follow a similar path?  “Never give up.”

Get Involved! 

You can help clean up a river too!  Check out National River Clean Up Week on June 2-10, 2007.  Check out the official website and the Connections Action Group website below, for more information on how you can help!

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Related Links

National River Cleanup Week Website
National River Cleanup Week website:
SkyVenture Colorado websiteCreek Connections Action Group website:

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A Special Message from Amazing Kids! for all you kids:

It's no secret...every person has an "amazing-ness" inside of them, just waiting to be discovered. (Sometimes we just need a little help in finding out what that "amazing-ness" is!)

If you are doing some amazing things too, we want to hear about it! Send us your stories about your amazing accomplishments, so we can tell the world just how amazing you are! We are always looking for new stories. And don't be shy! We'd love to hear from you!

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If you know someone who needs a little encouragement, why not tell them what you think is special about them? Maybe you can be the one to help them uncover their own special talents!

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