Youth Appreciation Award


Drawing inspiration from an exemplary individual, David Thomas III, of the 2500 block of South Alder Street, can now be looked upon as a role model in his own right. Because of his academic performance and cooperative and respectful nature, David, an eighth-grader at Epiphany of Our Lord, 1248 Jackson St., has earned high praise from those around him.

"David is determined and committed to excellence," Marisa Messina, David’s teacher, said. "He gives 100 percent in everything he does."

His determination has certainly played a role in his early successes, both in school and out. David’s perfect attendance turned into more than just good merit marks as he earned first honors and was a Neumann Scholar nominee. In addition to making the grade, David plays soccer, for which he was named a CYO All-Star, and basketball, while still finding time to be an altar server and participate on the yearbook staff and Student Council.

David’s no-nonsense philosophy may have been acquired from his biggest role model. Napoli Miriello, David’s grandfather, came to America with practically nothing and had no knowledge of the country he would call home. Because of his courage and determination, Miriello was able to overcome the challenges and build a life for himself — one which David has capitalized on. His grandfather’s character has seemingly rubbed of on the 14-year-old, who Messina describes as "a great example to younger students."

Motivated by his grandfather’s inspiration, David’s hard work seems to be paying off. Leaving his middle school behind, David’s next step will be high school and he already has plans to go to college. He has received scholarship offers from Neumann-Goretti and Roman Catholic high schools and has been accepted by St. Joseph’s Prep.

David Thomas III will receive a $150 savings bond. If you are a teacher or full-time educator and would like to nominate a student (first through 12th grades), call 215-336-2500 ext. 120 or e-mail