PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. - High-school students from the opposite side of the country showed gratitude and support for Soldiers in the form of artwork and letters at the end of their school year.

Miami, Fla. teacher Amy Garcia used a Memorial Day lesson to motivate her students to send their messages to Soldiers in appreciation of their service.

Garcia, a Monterey Institute of International Studies graduate, was familiar with the Soldiers' mission of learning foreign languages and thought they would match well with her students who were learning English as a second language at Miami Central Senior High School.

"These letters are in different languages, but I know that there are people there who can understand (most of) them," Garcia said.

"The students were so excited that their letters were going to real American Soldiers," she added.

After recognizing battalion Soldiers for meritorious service during a ceremony June 11, Lt. Col. David Jewell, 229th Military Intelligence Battalion commander, invited his Soldiers to look at the students' letters of support and gratitute.

Pfc. Michael Romanello, Co. E, 229th Military Intelligence Battalion, was excited to see letters for his home state.

"It's like a little something from home," said Romanello, an Orlando, Fla., native. "These kinds of things just make even the worst of days feel so much better."

Miami native Spc. Marcel Rivero, Co. D, 229th Military Intelligence Battalion, agreed with Romanello.

"It's a reminder of the goodness I left behind -- my beautiful city," Rivero said. "It is their prayers that make me continue to serve my country."