The Norman Transcript

Opinion

November 8, 2012

Thanks for your influence

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

I have written this letter in my head several times over the past three years but just have to write and publish it after the Norman High School Cross Country banquet.

Three years ago, our son, Forrest Hair, entered Norman High. It was his first time to enter public school, after growing up in China, and then spending a few years at an exemplary private school in Norman, Veritas Classical Academy.

From the very beginning of our experience at Norman High, we have been very impressed with every level of the atmosphere at this fine school, from the teachers, secretaries, counselors and administration. The coaches of the cross country team, however, have been a “Dream Team.”

These coaches are a parent’s dream. Why? They affirm and reaffirm everything you try and teach your children from toddlerhood on. When head coach Scott Monnard explained the purpose of cross country, he clearly stated, “We are about character.”

That is true. Every practice, every competition, every decision these coaches make reflects this value. They are about investing into the building of these young lives. They have been the mortar to the bricks of our parenting endeavors ... and what remains is something solid.

Suzy Rojas has been a powerful presence in establishing this program at NHS. She sees the gold in each student and seeks to bring it out. She has created a “culture of honor” by placing others before herself, with a healthy dose of self-deprecating humor. Time after time, our son would quote some of these “earthy, wise insights” gleaned from Coach Rojas. His life has been powerfully impacted by her simply because she believed in him (and we appreciate her “no whining” policy).

We are indebted to Coach Bob Byers, who steered us in the direction of NHS cross country when we were considering a sport for our son. If we have the chance to similarly encourage other parents, we will do the same. Thank you, coaches, for embodying all that you teach.

HOLLY HAIR

Norman

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Be careful out in the heat

    This week’s triple-digit temperatures are contributing to heat-related illnesses. The state health department’s Injury Prevention Service reminds Oklahomans of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke....

    July 25, 2014

  • Get smart on crime

    It’s no secret that prison guards have become the frontline mental health case workers in Oklahoma prisons. Accessing mental health services outside of prison is tough but even harder behind the walls....

    July 25, 2014

  • James Garner will be missed

    Editor, The Transcript: Norman native son James Garner was a fine actor on stage, screen and television. I enjoyed the “Maverick” TV series and, in particular, the 1959 episode “The Strange Journey of Jenny Hill” in which the very popular ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Quite the resilient bunch

    The people of Moore are a resilient bunch. They’ve bounced back from tornadoes before, but the current renaissance may be the quickest yet. FEMA officials said it would take two years to see some sense of normalcy. That’s hardly the case....

    July 24, 2014

  • A fresh start for VA

    All of us have high hopes for the confirmation and success of Veterans Affairs Secretary nominee Robert McDonald. If confirmed — and most believe he’s a shoe-in — McDonald will take over a paralyzed system of health care that is not ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Call up National Guard

    We’re not sure it will help, but you have to hand it to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He deployed up to 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to help secure his state’s border with Mexico this week....

    July 23, 2014

  • It’s only getting worse

    Conditions for children in Oklahoma were starting to look up for a few years, according to the annual Kids Count reports. Now we know it wasn’t getting better. The recession was impacting the rest of the country, dropping their scores....

    July 23, 2014

  • Noting a life well lived

    James Garner never intended to be a movie and television star. He just kind of lucked into it, he would tell those who asked. If you have the itch to act, get a good-paying job and spend your free time at your local community theater, he ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Recount that really matters

    Americans have been hearing a lot about Congressional elections, but there’s another one halfway around the globe that will matter far more....

    July 22, 2014

  • Runoffs get no respect

    The Aug. 26 Republican runoff election for the Cleveland County District 3 commissioner post is one of only 18 races on ballots around the state. Only two races are statewide — the Democrat contests for U.S. Senator nominee and state ...

    July 22, 2014