Monday night we presented the 8th annual Christi Thomas Memorial Scholarships to students at Seneca East. This one was particularly special and also the most emotional and difficult of all because they went to Christi's classmates (and my former sweet 7th grade students). This year's essays were the most touching we've ever received and we treasure the great memories and stories many of them shared with us about Christi - some we had never heard before. We know they loved her too and she has impacted their life and for that we are grateful.
|$1,000 Winners and four of the nicest young ladies you will ever meet! Theresa & Kaylyn were Christi's best friends and we see a bit of Christi in all of them. Kristen & Camiel wrote very thoughtful, loving and touching essays about Christi. Benjamin Frankart wrote an INCREDIBLE essay about Christi and he received a $1,5000 scholarship (not pictured). We love them all to the moon and back!!|
|$750.00 Scholarship Winners (not pictured: Tori S.) Great, great, great kiddos! I'm so proud of them! I was blessed to be their 7th grade teacher too. Christi loved being with them and while it breaks our heart she's not with them, we know she's with them in spirit wherever they go and in them we see a bit of her |
|Group Photo of the 2014 Christi Thomas Memorial Scholarship winners pictures with the three of us. Congrats to Christi's classmates! We love you all wish you the very, very best! You make us proud!|
Much to my surprise and delight, Shayla asked if she could give the speech this year. I really dislike doing it because it's emotionally draining so I was thrilled when she volunteered. She said she feels really close to Christi's classmates (We all do!) and she felt called to do this. I hope someone will share a picture or a video with me because I am so proud of her.
We thought she did a fabulous job, better than we ever would have. With great poise and pleasantries, she walked to the microphone and spoke about Christi, like how she loved being around Christi and that Christi could even make a trip to the dentist a great adventure. She shared with them how Christi's story impacted others and how we received a letter from a man in prison who said because of Christi he prayed for the first time in his life. She talked about Christi's 161 IQ and how proud she made us because of her amazing mind. Shayla shared that Christi gave us faith and hope and that her classmates let her joke around with them and act silly and goofy. It was around them that Christi could really enjoy life and not worry about having medicines pumped through her veins. We wish these students the very, very best and know that Christi will be with them in spirit as they go off to different universities in the fall. (And three are coming my way so I'm pretty pleased about that! I can always be "mom" to one more BG student who wants or needs me!)
$1,500 Scholarship: Benjamin Frankart
$1,000 Scholarships: Theresa Barger, Kristen Bowerman, Kaylyn Goshe and Camiel Stacy Ruffing
$750 Scholarships: Owen Best, Kimberly Ebata, Alyssa England, Evan Fritz, Amy Martin, Victoria Pisarsky, Cody Stombagh, Anna Willman and Jason Willman.
*Missing in Photo: Benjamin Frankart & Tori Pisarsky