This is my 20th year of teaching in the TCISD.

I’m a native of Texas City. I grew up on the south side of town in the projects.

It doesn’t matter where you grow up. It’s about taking what you have and making something positive out of it.

I was raised in a single-parent home: my mother two brothers and me.

I was always active in sports thanks to my mother who shuttled me back and forth to practice and games.

I attended Roosevelt-Wilson through sixth grade and then Levi Fry for seventh and eighth grades. We were called the Levi Fry Dragons.

The only sport offered to girls and boys at Levi Fry was tennis.

My two best friends Sharon Thompson and Leslie Green and I played. My ninth-grade class was the first class of ninth-graders to attend TCHS.

It was a big adjustment especially getting used to the crowded hallways and hanging out with my friends in the student center.

Being in sports at TCHS kept me pretty busy. I played volleyball and ran track.

Volleyball was my favorite.

I remember having practice at 6 a.m. every morning except game day.

The thing I most disliked about getting up at that time was having to run. When you entered the gym you had to be on time and ready to go. The varsity and junior varsity coach was Sally Waters who was always on time with her cup of coffee in hand.

Her two infamous words were ”Hit it.” That meant you took off running.

She believed in discipline and hard work. She was firm yet fair. I have to say I took the discipline and hard work that she instilled in me and instilled it in my players when I coached.

My most memorable moment was when I was a sophomore playing on the junior varsity team and was told I would be accompanying the varsity team to a tournament.

I didn’t get a lot of playing time but it was exciting just being a part of the varsity team.

My last year at TCHS was one that I truly enjoyed. I earned MVP and first team district volleyball honors. I was also voted Senior Class Favorite along with Joe Cornish by my classmates.

I also participated in Youth In Government Day voted on by the student body. I was one of the city commissioners serving in the same seat as Pct. 1 Commissioner Thomas Carter for a day.

One of the saddest moments during my senior year was when one of my volleyball teammates Ronda Sue George was seriously injured in an accident. An entire page in our yearbook was dedicated to her. She never fully recovered and has since passed away.

I was offered a four-year track scholarship to Lamar University and a four-year volleyball scholarship to Stephen F. Austin State University and a scholarship from the Community Development Council.

I returned to Texas City and was hired to teach and coach volleyball at TCHS. I started out coaching freshman volleyball track and basketball. I later accepted the job as head volleyball coach.

Well I took my knowledge of years of playing under several good coaches at Texas City and applied it to my coaching. I worked the girls hard probably harder than they ever had been worked before. All of this hard work paid off. We were the first volleyball team in Texas City High School history to advance to the playoffs.

It was truly a memorable and unforgettable moment for all.

I transferred to Blocker Middle School thanks to Dick Carter. The faculty and staff here are a great team to work with.

I would like to encourage all graduates of TCHS to come back and contribute and never forget where you came from.

I didn’t.

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