Scotland County is chock full of good news, and a good portion of that comes from our younger generation.
While many of those who have put quite a few years on this earth tend to think the youth of today have a lot to learn about hard work, respect, authority and responsibility, there are quite a few of those teens and pre-teens who are leading the way. These youngsters are wise beyond their years, and should be emulated by their peers.
And admired by the rest of us.
In the past week alone, this newspaper has focused on a number of local youngsters who deserve to have the spotlight on them — and appear to be destined for bigger and better things.
Let’s start with a trio of friends who cooked up an idea, made a plan and then put it into action.
Parker Vrnak, 9; Jasely Terry, 11; and Preston House, 10, of Laurinburg operated a simple lemonade stand along South Main Street on Thursday with the idea they would donate whatever profit they made to the Humane Society of Scotland County.
Why? Just because they all loved animals.
After weathering a hot-sticky couple of hours, the youngsters closed up shop and counted their cash. They each went home that day knowing they would be handing over more than $130. An awesome job.
And then there was Tuesday’s meeting of the Laurinburg Rotary Club.
As members arrived, pinned on their nameplates and found a table to enjoy their spaghetti lunch, another table in the center of the room began to get filled with six individuals wearing ties and dark blue sportsjackets. The club was soon introduced to the Blue Blazers from Carver Middle School in Laurel Hill.
These young men, all eighth-graders under the tutelage of coach James McLean, are select students who have chosen to learn all of the aspects needed to become successful and upstanding adults. The five students representing the Blue Blazers that day were Jeremiah Short, Gabriel Jones, Demarion Davis, Cayden Graves and Amari Chance — each one oozing with pride, confidence and respect. The number of “yes, sirs” coming from their table were countless.
The Blue Blazers program, which generally carries about 35 students in the sixth through eighth grade at Carver, should be copied and pasted into every middle school in Scotland County, North Carolina and beyond. Those who go through it are expected to work hard at community service, in the classroom, on the athletic field and at home with their sights set on being the very best they can and should be. And if they do, they will carry those positive traits forward in life.
From a little lemonade stand to a middle-school leadership program, these are the kinds of things that give us hope for the future. They are stories that shouldn’t be kept secret, ignored or even buried someplace deep in a newspaper or website. They should be celebrated and, if there is a reason to sensationalize a story, each of these was it.
So if you know of a youngster doing great things, whether it’s an individual act of kindness or as part of a group, we hope you will let us know. We want to tell these stories so we can assure Scotland County there are good things going on all around us.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“To be doing good deeds is man’s most glorious task.” (Sophocles)