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Spring Hill High students give thanks to their role models

Chapin, SC - Senior Natalie Hickman fought back the tears as she read in front of her classmates and specifically, someone special in her life.

“Dear mom, I’d like to just thank you for being there for me when it feels like no one else is.”

This powerful letter was just one of many read in Ryan Cole’s class as students celebrated “Role Model Day.” Each student was assigned to write a personal letter to a person they look up to. On November 20, that significant individual joined the student in class for a heartfelt message.

“I started this many years ago and felt like it was extremely important,” Cole said. “It gives you an opportunity to see a different side of the student that you may not see every day. It also allows the other students in class to get to know each other even better.”

Parents and grandparents looked on with water-filled eyes as they listened to the words of impact they have had.

“I just love her so much,” Hickman said. “She’s just the best person I’ve ever met. She’s always there for me, and has always had a good head on her shoulders. Her attitude is always positive even when someone may have a bad one towards her. She’s just a great person.”

Christa Hickman, like the rest of the adults in the room, was pleasantly surprised when they were asked to be a part of the day.

“When (Natalie) first asked me, I was like ‘Wow, she thinks that much of me.’ So I said sure I’ll come,” Hickman said. “I think every mother should be their child’s role model. It starts at home. Every parent should want to be their child’s role model.”

Cole has certainly seen many parents and grandparents over the years, and that is the reason why he chooses to keep the tradition going.

“Being a parent is a daunting task, and sometimes you feel beaten up and wonder if you’re doing the right things for your children,” Cole said. “To have this day and parents be reminded of how much they truly mean in their child’s life is rewarding on both ends.”

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