Smith: The Mountain Lion legacy - East Valley Tribune: Mesa

Smith: The Mountain Lion legacy

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Posted: Monday, May 26, 2014 11:30 am

To the senior Class of 2014, tonight is for us! Tonight is one of many accomplishments that each of us will have throughout life's journey. However this evening is especially endearing because we get to experience it together. Take a moment and think of, if you haven't already, about the days leading up to this point.

What's the first thing that pops into your head? For some, it’s faces. The faces of best friends you never had a dull moment with. Or, they are the faces of coaches and teachers who gave you life-changing advice. For others, it's an experience. It could have been an experience from a spring break trip, or of a time when the Mountain Lions won in the final seconds of the game. What if it’s a song? A song that was played for a month straight, through a pair of 12 inch subs, while arriving to school a minute before sweep. Ponder those thoughts. These are the memories that will come back to you when you least expect them for the rest of your life.

It’s funny because the memories we have today, were the dreams of 9th grade Shepherd Stallions and Fremont Falcons just four short years ago. The reflections bring back feelings that stir up our emotions. But where did they come from? Where did we come up with the ideas about what Red Mountain was going to be like? How did we get a blueprint of a high schooler's awesome adventure? I would have to say - the class before us. They set a pattern for us just like the class before them did. They demonstrated a way of life, a legacy - one which is to be followed and at the same time made our own. It reminds me of a trail that goes up a mountain.

The trail will stay the same for the most part, but the combination of foot steps along the path will always be different. Some will be to the right, to the left of, in front of, and behind the person walking in front of you. A Mountain Lion’s Legacy is the same way. We all walk on the same path of life together, but our steps are in different places.

But what is a Legacy? A Legacy is something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor from the past. Of all our experiences we had over the last four years, what were the ones that left a legacy?

Did we leave a legacy in the classroom? Well if an A+ Rating doesn't say so I don't know what does. Did we do it in athletics? Watch us lift up the AIA Directors Cup. How about in the type of people we became? We lived by a set of core values like courage, where we never back down from the most admirable of opponents. Respect, we were mentored and taught to put others needs above our own and to do the hard thing. Influence, making sure that we brought people along with us on our journey. Our Lion Legacy was being etched in stone while we were still on our campus and now it will continue on with all of our class’s future accomplishments.

And so, today marks the start of a new phase in our Mountain Lion Legacy. Once you receive your diploma, this chapter is finished but remember a legacy never ends a legacy lives on after a person or group goes away. As we all head to different places, in-state and out-of-state colleges, continue to be proud that you are a Mountain Lion. Others have come and gone from here and have been successful, why cant you?

No matter the circumstances, when we see each other again we will celebrate in the success accomplished by our fellow classmates, not only because we were friends but because we are Mountain Lions and we are contributing to society in ways only mountain lions know how.

In whatever you chase after in life, know that we all have confidence in you because

Mountain Lions chase after things until their vision has become a reality. In all your chasing, remember that life is not primarily what we've done or what we'll do that will echo in eternity, but rather what we'll be and what we'll become! I challenge us to continue being courageous, respectful and influential in all our endeavors and in striving to be these things we will leave the Lion Legacy not only on this campus but the campus of life. For everyone here tonight, never forget. We’re not human doings. But rather human beings!

Be courageous

Be respectful

Be influential

And now, on behalf of the Class of 2014, I challenge this years Juniors, Sophomores, and Freshman. Start leaving a Mountain Lion Legacy. We've have done all we could do on this campus, and now it’s up to you. We hand off the baton. And now would everyone join me in something special: Repeat after me, “On this mountain, we stand as one!”

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