Two students at Schaghticoke Middle School in New Milford were recently recognized for their essays about founding father and local hero Roger Sherman.

State Representative Bill Buckbee (R-67th) sponsored the essay contest.

Buckbee recently visited the school and presented the contest’s first-place prize to Aiden Rustigan. Shayne Kayfus received second place.

“The pieces Aiden and Shayne submitted were incredibly detailed and composed with precision,” Buckbee said, noting the 298th anniversary of Sherman’s birthday is this year.

“I think that it’s an incredibly important our students have an opportunity to learn a little bit about local history, while showcasing their writing abilities,” Buckbee said.

“Based on my recent visit to Schaghticoke, I know the students learned quite a bit about one of our more notable neighbors here in New Milford and all submissions were wonderful to review,” he said.

Sherman was elected to the then-titled Governor’s Council in 1766. The Governor’s Council is known today as the State Senate.

Sherman later served in Congress and went on to play an influential role at the Constitutional Convention.

“It’s clear to me that all of the participants were able to connect the dots between what Roger Sherman did for today’s society and how we can continue that legacy,” Buckbee said.

“I’m impressed with the work that Schaghticoke Middle School students are capable of,” he said. “When there is an instance of academic excellence, it’s important that those individuals who created the work be recognized.”

During his visit to SMS, Buckbee presented official legislative citations to the essay contest winners.

Legislative citations are a formal acknowledgement from the entire General Assembly of an individual’s high achievement.

The citations are signed by Buckbee and all of the legislative leaders at the State Capitol.

Aiden Rustigan was also presented with a Connecticut State Flag, which had been flown over the State Capitol in Hartford.