This picture left quite an impression.
It did more than just celebrate achievement.
It brought clarity.
It changed the perspective.
Connected the dots.
A lot of them:
One young man lends his guidance, offers his wisdom and shares his enthusiasm to help a younger debate squad excel at a recent state meet.
Another makes time to film, edit and produce videos while his classmate designs and creates a marketing piece for a far-reaching, community wide, fundraiser.
A graduate takes center stage on a cold Friday night to articulate a life altering challenge.
And yet another is moved to pen an essay on what it means to be a Highlander.
Teammates from several springs past return to the diamond last summer to honor their coach – and cheer on their successors.
B’s and g’s from all classes and walks of athletic life populate the sidelines, help fill the stands, gyms and rinks – over weekends and break – to support their younger teammates, rally their teams and represent their school.
The young lady – on the right – returns to help foster an environment and develop the programs that will connect future generations of kids together in our community.
And a much decorated and respected athlete – on the left – mentors a fellow d-lineman ten years his junior, helping him to become the pride of Wisconsin high school football in 2014.
And those are only the examples I am aware of at this time.
I am sure that all of you have your own moments and stories to share.
For whatever the case, each one of these kids is a treasure. All part of a tradition that will never graduate.
Forever bonded to one another.
Engaged in developing the much bigger picture.
And invested in a making a lasting and positive impact.
You cannot help but see them everywhere.
Not in the least.
It is just that Todd, Chris, Brett, Ben G. Matt, Amy, Rachel, Lauren, Rachel, Emily, Andria, Emily, Ciara, Bekkah, Michelle, Hannah, Erica, Rachael, Monica, “E”, Amanda, Sasha, Eric, Anton, Yuri, Spud, Adam, Bubba, Bryce, Thomas, Michael, Ryan, Luke, Elizabeth and Ben S. weren’t ever in it for the face time, the recognition or the accolades.
It is just what they do.
And what many of our other scholars, artists and student-athletes around these parts do.
Past, present and future.
Giving all the good they got – right back.
Not simply over the span of their four years.
But for the long haul.
An enduring legacy.
Keeping all those dots connected.
In that long, red, line.