Senior Night 2013

I've been tailing Coach Toy to volleyball matches for a very long time now, and in those many years I've witnessed at least 30 Senior Nights.  They always challenge me emotionally.  Time has always been my least favorite of God's creations, and "Senior Night" is a true indicator that time has indeed marched on.  This year, however will be even more difficult, for reasons I hope to explain.

You see, this group, our nine seniors, are the last team who remembers a time BEFORE we became "a story".
They are the last group who remembers what our bench looked like, felt like, sounded like, BEFORE the "Bus Ride to Franklin" and evening that shook us all, and a night that started this decent.
They remember Ellen as being physically involved in practices and as an intense presence on the sidelines at games.  There can be no coach in all of volleyball who more enjoyed the freedom of being finally allowed to STAND and PACE during matches.
So much has changed.
These nine remember Jaime as the young vibrant teacher and coach she was then.  Many of them had Jaime in class as 7th and 8th graders and all of them had her as their first glimpse at the possibilities that volleyball gave them.  She was their first coach.
These nine remember.
They remember how a sister, stepped up, and stepped in, gave her all to the team in her sisters absence.  I know Jodie loved coaching the team, and how she enjoyed taking stories of you're achievements, to share them with Jaime.
They remember Dan, taking on more responsibility than what he signed up for, and NEVER wavering.  He will always be considered the backbone of this team, for his untiring commitment to this team, this FAMILY.
They remember how a new teacher, thrust into a emotionally charged and difficult set of circumstances, rose to the occasion.  Maggie will ALWAYS be a remembered for being in the right place, at the right time, and steadying a shaken group of athletes.
They will never forget the deepness of the sorrow they felt upon learning of Jenna's passing, and the will ALWAYS remember that she was a bright and shining beacon, someone to emulate, and her faith will stay with them forever.
They will remember.

For all that come after this, there will be stories, pictures, images from the time that will surely pass, but these nine, they will remember.

The good that was.
The heartache.
The lessons.
The wins and the losses.
The courage it took, just to go on.
These nine will forever remember.