I can’t imagine how timing has played a more important part than the off week for the 2-3 LLano Yellow Jackets. When you tackle the word “adversity”, I think this is what they meant.
Go back to only last Friday night, the slow beginning at the Fredericksburg game again spelled disaster for Llano. Getting behind 14-0 early could have been over come, but in comes a rain storm that had little mercy on a football team that had to come from behind to win. But, with a football that looked like a medicine ball when quarterback Layton Rabb attempted a pass, and running backs that looked like they were playing on a glass table, the football Gods had this game plan in a wreck before anyone knew what to do. The late effort by Llano was not enough, and the 14-6 final score was a horrible disappointment. This was one game Llano let get away.
The injuries seem to mount, and sickness as well. By the following Monday, three starters had been to the doctors, and it will take a few more days to get everyone back to speed physically. Junior Issac Hutto, a two way starter still may not see action again for several weeks. The Open Week is a blessing.
But, to put all of this into prospective, the loss of senior Drew Buttery in an accident Sunday morning made other worries seem trivial. Drew, while not on the football team this season, had greater horizons to still master. His loss to the community is one I have never seen. The City of Llano was so strangley silent all week. And the loss to his dearest friends will last for a lifetime. I am one that firmly believes everything has a time, and a purpose. The loss of Drew will never be understood, but for his family, and closest friends, his life will stand for so much. It is just up to all of us as a community and his family to try and make sense of the loss, and make sure his momory stands forever. I know his life will live on forever.
In the summer of 1967, Stanly Horlen, a senior to be, passed away. Stanley was my best friend in Johnson City in the first and second grades. Both families moved back to Llano beginning in the third grade. As the years went by, I guess we drifted apart, due to his concentration on academics, and I leaned more toward athletics. And to my surprise, even 45 years later, I still think of Stanley, and remember his big hearty laugh, and so keen of a sense of humor. I still miss him today.
A football loss is a minor thing in the scope of life. But the memories that are stamped out in granite last a lifetime. The Yellow Jackets are making memories, and that less than 100% effort in each and every endeavor, and each and every play, will be called regrets. Every effort must be made to cause less regrets in ones life. One Llano Yellow Jacket told me that the 100% effort by Drew in everything he did is the memory he leaves with us all. This past week leaves us with a memory of the loss of a special friend. One that will never be forgotten.
Thank you Mike for so eloquently stating the enormity of space one single person can take up. Like you, I lost friends in high school through tragic deaths. Growing up in small town Katy, Texas in the 70’s where everyone knew everyone, just like in Llano today; we lost four students in a terrible accident that to this day haunts me. It has always amazed me just how much space one person can take up in a heart and in a memory. I did not know Drew as a teenager only as a small child from church especially during his 2nd grade year from Logos. He was very bright, inquisitive and eager to please. I enjoyed knowing him at that time of his life very much. Drew Buttery, I will never forget you.