They pay close attention as their team mates compete and are always all smiles and enthusiasm. It is a team that any school would be proud to call their own and yet very few are even aware of these hard working athletes. They have improved dramatically and even have a girl’s relay team headed to the Regionals.
Even that is not the best part of the story. You see these teenagers are doing something that simply defies standard norms. They get up 3 and even 4 times a week at a little after 5:00 a.m. to go and practice before school. They do so of their own free will and due to the fact that it is the only available time they could secure with the limited number of pools in our area. You see, in the world today, 5:00 a.m. and teenagers are very seldom synonomous.
So they are getting much needed excercise, learning what it’s like to be part of a team and most importantly of all, they are learning what it means to have a strong work ethic.
Over the past few generations we have seen the concept of working hard to achieve worthwhile goals diminish in ways that I believe is far more detrimental than most of us recognize. We seem to glorify the ability to avoid work and are constantly looking for rewards without effort.
In this the age we live in where communication is instantaneous and opportunities are changing on a daily basis, there is simply no denying the tremendous value that a person who has the work ethic to jump in and get things done will bring to all that they endeavor to accomplish.
If each of these young people went on to win a state championship, I still would not be any more proud than I am today because what they are requiring of themselves are the very same traits and values that built this great country and has allowed us to lead the world for more than 200 years.
It really is that important and this crew becomes more valuable each and every day. I really look forward to the great things they will accomplish in the water and down the road of life.
The 2010 -2011 Parkwood High School Swim Team
Coach – Andrew Starnes
- Loyd Pennington
Send an email to Loyd
2011 Union County, NC