To the Crimson and the Gold


Gwendalyn Waggoner, Editor

With bright red curly pigtails and the chubbiest cheeks, I stepped onto the school bus for my first day of school. As a 6 year old, I had no idea what I was getting myself into, I mean honestly, I don’t recall signing up for 13 years of school! The journey was treacherous, striving for a report card with a list of A’s, a promise to treat all students as my friends, and to have a million worthy memories to flood my brain as I reach all of my “lasts”. My “almost theres” never validated my success, because I ensured myself I had more. I saved myself from tears as I watched the previous classes leave their legacies behind as I spent my high school career promising myself all the waterworks when it was my turn.

Well, it is senior year and all I have is other people’s lasts. I won’t get the sacred moment of looking out on the rest of the drama club I have been a part of all four years one last time as their president. My voice will never echo through the band room over the sound of sniffles on closing night. I will never get to experience the true chaotic bliss of walking through five points again. Things I never knew I could miss left a gaping void in my daily routine, I have put down my I.D. forever, I have unpacked my backpack one last time, I have sat in those uncomfortable chairs around the tables for one last joke with the Best Buddies group. 

— Gwendalyn Waggoner

I do not regret a single moment spent at Rock Island High School. This school was never a prison of useless knowledge; this school was a stone in my path. I may have doubted a few moments in my teachers’ methods, but as I look back, I wish for another moment to listen to their advice. Another moment to sit in the infamous hallway with the gaggle of teachers and their chairs, another moment to hear Mrs. Hayek comment on my “giggle snort”, another moment to hear Mr. Corwin reminisce on his glory days, and another moment to walk into a classroom and see a motley crew of brilliant minds. The words to  Alma Mater will never sound the same as my time by the mighty Mississippi has come to an end, and I say my final goodbye through the typed out words on my computer screen rather than in the school we love so dearly, now and evermore.