LAYTON -- Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy of service lived Monday as high school students from all over the Top of Utah participated in a special service project.
The Utah Region of the American Red Cross hosted Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities across the state for the fourth consecutive year.
Officially titled "The Martin Luther King Make a Difference Day," the Red Cross event commemorated King's call to serve by allowing students to discuss humanitarian issues and learn from their peers and other leaders in their community.
At the Weber State University Davis campus in Layton, approximately 40 students from Weber, Davis and Morgan counties gathered to make large banners for Utah troops who will be coming home from overseas deployments in the coming months.
"Our theme this year is service for the Armed Forces," said Judy Loper, a volunteer coordinator with the Red Cross.
"They do so much to serve us, and this is a way to serve them and pay them back for all they do."
Denise De Vynck, founder of Letters to Soldiers, participated in the Monday event, helping students make the banners.
De Vynck started the organization four years ago. Since its inception, the group has made banners and written letters for more than 4,000 Utah service members.
"It's important to show them our support in any way we can," De Vynck said.
In addition to making several large banners, the students listened to guest speakers and learned how to operate in a natural disaster.
"It's really great, because school is out today, so these kids are coming on their day off," Loper said. "It's a sacrifice. We call it a day on, not a day off."
Davis High seniors Morgan Bass and Josh Levitre participated in the Monday event.
"It's a good cause," Bass said. "It's our day off, but I think it's a good thing to do some service for the troops."
Levitre said volunteering for the service project was time well spent.
"They do so much for us all year-round," he said. "The least we could do is take a couple of hours from our day to show them support and serve them."
Students who participated were able to earn community service and National Honor Society points.