Tonight Jim and I attended the Tremont High School senior awards night. I, along with several other parents, presented scholarships that have been set up in memory of our children who have been taken from us far too soon.
The nominees for the Jalayne Laynee Grace Holmes Memorial scholarship are selected by a panel of school faculty members. They are nominated for being excellent role models, having positive attitudes, service to others and for their demonstration of compassion and kindness. The nominees are asked to write an essay detailing their attitude toward the word "retard" as used in name calling. Our family chooses the recipient based on the content of the essay. This year there were 12 students nominated and it was difficult to choose between the essays.
It is with a bittersweet feeling that I spoke tonight to our community about the offensiveness of the "R word." I am delighted to have this oppurtunity to reach a large group of people and hope that at least some of them will really hear what I am saying and commit to ending the deragatory use of the word. While I am grateful for the oppurtunity to keep Laynee's memory alive through this scholarship, my heart aches from the fact that there is a need for a memorial. I wish that she, herself, with her squishy hugs and radiant smiles were here to continue touching lives, not just her memory.
This year's recipient is a young man that I know will prove himself worthy of this scholarship. He is a friend of Grant's, one of strong character and values.
Make Laynee proud, Sam Stuber.
CS Lewis once said that "grief is like the sky, it covers everything." In recent weeks, our family has found that this is so very true. It seems that there is no right or wrong way to travel this path of grief. I have created this blog in hopes that some day we will be able to look back on our journey and see written proof that our great God never leaves us. God is good all the time.