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A Time To Be Thankful

Posted: November 28, 2013 - 1:04am
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Juneau-Douglas High School seniors Noah McVay (55), George Sua (19), Kris Hill (80) and Derik Vance (42) escort honorary captain Gaye Willis onto the Adair Kennedy Field for the coin flip on senior night. Willis, the JDHS attendance secretary, is battling cancer.  KLAS STOLPE | JUNEAU EMPIRE
KLAS STOLPE | JUNEAU EMPIRE
Juneau-Douglas High School seniors Noah McVay (55), George Sua (19), Kris Hill (80) and Derik Vance (42) escort honorary captain Gaye Willis onto the Adair Kennedy Field for the coin flip on senior night. Willis, the JDHS attendance secretary, is battling cancer.

It isn’t often we have a day to do nothing but be thankful.

In reality however, we should be able to be thankful every day.

To surround that calendar distinction with pigskin and pies, or hoops and drumsticks, and then a giant shopping spree may defeat the purpose of the day but we mean well.

There is much to be thankful for on the sporting life in Juneau and a lot that we still need to work on.

I am really blessed to find more parking spaces at the Floyd Dryden and Dzantik’I Heeni parking lots when I go to cover a sporting event.

I suppose it you take a set of parents away from each kid on the B and C teams then a few slots open up, as do seats in the bleachers.

What is to be thankful for you ask?

Maybe kids are filling this time with other creative endeavors and broadening their horizons is what I would like to think.

Maybe more are enjoying the intramural aspect of sports.

I am thankful we have teachers, administrators and parents who care a lot about this topic.

I am thankful to have watched Ben Jahn play football for Thunder Mountain.

This was a man playing among boys. The senior’s abilities were far above his Falcons’ teammates but I cannot count on my hands the number of times he picked his young followers up, dusted them off, looked them in the eye and told them it was OK.

This was a program caught up in controversy and to some extent it still is.

I know today a lot of young men will be sitting down with their parents and eating a meal and watching a game on the tube.

And I know one young man who is not.

He unfortunately was on a viral video as the punching bag for a coach.

This lad’s holiday meal will be served in youth lockdown as he heals from an assortment of ramifications from things that will not come to light until this story is read before a jury of peers.

On the whole however, I am thankful for more good than bad.

The athletes in Juneau have provided a swim championship, a football title game, wrestling matches, volleyball spikes, slap shots and uneven bar dismounts.

They run, swim, jump and throw.

They ski, kick, dive and bowl.

They swing and miss and they sometimes knock the ball a mile.

When we give thanks today, let’s give it for both the good and for those who may be hurting.

So give thanks well today.

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