Pacer Officers and Cheer Captains say their final goodbyes to Prep community

From Issue 8

Pacer Captain: Alexis Simon

After being a Pacer for three years, it’s hard to believe that it has finally come to an end. Each year brought special memories that I’ll never forget. I was fortunate enough to be Captain this year, and I wouldn’t have traded that for the world. I got to lead the flock with Mrs. Jackson, Jordan Headley, and Mary Patton Murphy. Some of my favorite moments from this past season were mixing the music and making up the dances with the other officers. Nothing compares to planning a dance out on paper and seeing the 33 other girls do what you had envisioned. As senior year came along, many “lasts” for Pacer did too. Seniors took in our last Pacer beach, 6 A.M. practice in June, and JA week together, knowing most of us won’t be going to the same colleges next year. Wearing the uniform for the last time was one of the hardest goodbyes. Realizing I was never going to wear stars, boots, or gloves again was crazy to think about. What I will miss the most, though, will be marching out to back in black with all the other girls. Being a Pacer throughout high school has meant so much to me. I’m forever grateful for the friends, good times, and experiences I’ve gained from it.

1st Lieutenant: Jordan Headley

Pacer has been one of the major highlights of my 6 years at Jackson Prep!  I have loved everything about it – the friendships, Friday night games, Thursday night dinners, pep rallies,  Pacer beach, and even summer early morning practices. There is something special about Pacer that really can’t be put into words, but you feel it when you are supporting and representing your football team, basketball team, and school as a group in those famous white boots! This year was also extra special serving as 1st Lieutenant. Taking on a leadership role for such an amazing program has been such an honor and an experience I not only learned so much from but will never forget. Pacer is a very special part of Jackson Prep.  I’m so thankful for the years I had being a part of something so magical and I am thrilled for the new 36 flamingos that will be kicking high for our school next year. I will always remember this wonderful experience and all of the fun memories! #PFL

2nd Lieutenant: Mary Patton Murphy

Being a Pacer officer was such a rewarding experience for me, not because of the attention I received from it, but because it gave me an opportunity to serve the team that I had been a part of for two years already. To be on the other side of things, creating and teaching dances versus learning them from others, took hard work and dedication, but I was often reminded of those who led me when I was younger and the effort they put into making our team look good on Friday nights, which encouraged me. There are so many things that I am going to miss about being a Pacer and a Pacer officer. I’m so thankful for Alexis and Jordan and the way that they stayed on top of things and worked so diligently. One of the ways that we did this was by having “closet lunches” in the “Pacer closet”, where we went over plans and dances for the week. That little closet is where the magic happens! I’m also going to miss our practices, even summer practices! Despite waking up at 5:30 AM, I was always so happy to see the team. Oh how I’m going to miss seeing my friends every day in June this summer! Even though it’s hard to say goodbye, I know that after tryouts, Prep has 36 outstanding Pacers this year, and three incredible officers to lead them.

Cheer Captain: Mary Parker Plunkett

It has been such an honor to be a cheerleader at Prep since the 8th grade, but being captain was a special experience. I will always cherish the relationships and memories that I have made over the past five years. Each person on the squad this year had a special relationship, and we truly became a group who loved being around each other. Everyone was always willing to work hard and go the extra mile. My favorite memory from this year is cheering in the championship football game. That victory was the sweetest one ever! I could not have asked for a better way to go out. Basketball games were also so much fun this year. I want to give a special thanks to the student section for making each game so much fun and always being ready to cheer on our teams with us. I could not have asked for a better squad- I love you girls so much. Thank you Jackson Prep for these experiences and memories that I will remember forever. Go Pats!

Co-Captain: Henley Johnson

This past season, our cheerleading squad worked harder and longer than ever to try to fully reach our potential and be as good as we could. Mary Parker and I worked as hard as we could to organize and demonstrate a good work ethic and showcase a new outlook on cheer with different dancing, stunting, and music styles. I think my senior year cheerleading season was the best by far due to the fact that we were the oldest and all of the girls on the team got along so well. This was a great group of different personalities making for a really fun season. I have never been more proud of an accomplishment thus far than how well this team turned out. My leadership with Mary Parker also worked out perfectly, which I think contributed to the team’s greatness because we were so united. I wouldn’t have wanted to do it with anyone else. I am so grateful for the opportunity and all that it taught me about leadership. I truly will miss being a cheerleader; it is definitely my favorite thing to be involved with at Prep. However, if you aren’t serious about being one of the captains, I wouldn’t even try out for it because it sure it is a ton of hard work, devotion, and time. Making up so many dances isn’t as easy as it seems, but for me personally it sure was worth it.