I started writing this column a few weeks ago, and I was thrown back a little bit because I lost a really good friend, Anthony.
Anthony wasn’t just a friend in the sense of somebody you can depend on or talk to, he was a friend in the sense of one who shared the same values, one who shared the same passion, and one who was always there for you.
Not too long after that we, the Thornton Fractional North High School community, lost one of our star student-athletes, Jessica Teeter. Jessica was everything you would want in a daughter and student.
The loss of this close friend and a star student got me thinking about how we should value and appreciate each other and what we have in life.
One thing I will always tell my students, children, and friends is to appreciate and value life and the opportunities it presents.
Anthony and Jessica valued and appreciated life. They both recognized the gifts they were given and tried to make the best of them, all the time. They both worked hard to ensure their success and the success of others. They both appreciated the hard work and efforts of their family and friends by always showing gratitude.
Anthony appreciated and valued life by making sure he was a loving father, giving his time to others and supporting his community. Jessica appreciated and valued life every day by being the best student, sibling and athlete she could be and always tried to find ways to help others.
Anthony and Jessica were grateful and thankful for what they had and tried to show the way for others.
When you think about it, at times we take for granted one of the most important things we have, which is one life to live. At times, we don’t appreciate and value the hard work of others and the things we have in this world, such as family, friends and education, to name a few.
Unfortunately, we don’t think about this until we lose a friend, family member or one of our precious students. We all have gifts, we all have potential, and we all should all appreciate and value what we have been given by supporting, expressing and displaying gratitude for others.
Let’s not wait until the unfortunate loss of a friend, student or family member to show appreciation for what we have been given. Take advantage of the time we have and make the best of it. Then truly we are making a better place for all people, for all students, for all mothers, for all fathers, for all human beings.
I will miss you, Anthony and Jessica, and I truly appreciate and value you both.
Dwayne Evans is principal at Thornton Fractional North High School. The opinions are the writer's.