Tonight I had the pleasure of presenting Laynee's memorial scholarship to a young lady that I know will prove herself worthy.
Each year the nominees for Laynee's scholarship are asked to write an essay detailing their attitude toward the word retard in name calling. This year there were 9 nominees and, as always, each of the essays were very well written. And, as always, there were a couple that stood out among the rest. The essay that we chose proved that the young lady who wrote it clearly understood the offensiveness of the "R" word. We feel confident from her writing that she not only will avoid using the word, but she will make a point to educate others who do use the word.
It is always with a heavy heart that I stand before the senior class to present Laynee's scholarship. It seems, in so many ways, surreal to talk of Laynee and our love for her, of what she meant to us and to all who knew her. It pains me to talk about he "R" word and the bitter taste that it leaves in the mouths of those touched by intellectual challenges. Yet, as I look out among the many faces before me, I can see the light of understanding on several of them. I can see that it has never occurred to most of them how it might feel to our family and others with disablities when we hear that word used to demean another. I can see that some will walk away with a determination never to utter that word again. I can hope with everything in me, that those who have learned tonight will share what they learned with others.
My mind can barely wrap around the fact that already we have given 3 of these scholarships in Laynee's memory.
Tonight we proudly presented the third Jalayne "Laynee" Grace Holmes scholarship to Miss Taylor Haggerdorn.
Make Laynee Proud Taylor.
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.