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Bulldog Pride • Freshmen Abigail Barrios, Brooklyn Wilkerson, Catherine Dennis, and Joseph Chavez and sophomore Rylan Copeland, wear their spirit day shirts for Red Ribbon week. Photo by Jimena Espinoza.

Volume XXI, Issue 2

Kilgore High School

December 11, 2020

For the students, by the students

New students inducted into NHS Carly Mauldin Junior Editor The National Honor Society is a nationwide organization for U.S. high school students. Founded in 1921, it recognizes students based on their hard work and ethics. “The pillars of NHS are Scholarship, Service, Leadership, and Character,” NHS sponsor Carl Mohn said. “The ideal NHS candidate is someone who exemplifies all of these qualities. National Honor Society values are universal and show that a candidate is committed to lifelong learning, everyday service, leading others well, and displaying exemplary character. These pillars aren’t qualities to be acquired, but show

Passing the Torch • Senior and second year NHS member Brooklyn Hall explains the importance of character, one of the five pillars of NHS, to the new group inductees and lights the corresponding candle. Photo by Amy Bates.

the present nature of the person.” On Nov. 17, Kilgore welcomed 54 new members to the NHS chapter at the NHS Induction held at First Baptist Church. Students were congratulated for their exceptional accomplishments before lighting their candles to become officially a part of the group. “I expect [NHS] to be a place where hard working students help each other and the community,” senior David Moreno said. “Although I am a little nervous, I am still very excited because me getting accepted proves my hard work is paying off. I expect it to prepare me for leadership positions and be a better student and person.” Students will now be expected to work together individually, as well as a group, serve their community and prepare themselves for their futures.

“Once inducted into the National Honor Society, members are expected to continue to portray the ideals of NHS, particularly service,” Mohn said. “All NHS members are expected to complete service hours during their time as a member. We encourage all members to be involved in service opportunities around the community, whether it is in a church, civic organization, or some other service experience.” Many newly inducted members have expressed excitement about being a part of a community of students dedicated to learning and leading. “I expect that from being a part of NHS I will be better prepared for life after high school,” junior Zachary Riggs said. “From the application when the four pillars were explained, I believe that any association that

sets up a base on those purposes can only better students that partake in it because in the modern day, character, honor and helping others is very rare to see.” NHS is an organization made for students who want to push themselves to make big accomplishments. It helps them improve their work ethic and reach their goals. “The characteristics of NHS members prepare them to be contributing citizens of the world,” Mohn said. “The qualities of scholarship, service, leadership, and character are desperately needed in the world today. Also, NHS prepares students for college. There are leadership opportunities that come along with being an NHS member and the service hours members are expected to perform help college applicants build their resume.”

First Time Voters study

Seniors learn about the importance of politics and voting Madison Donovan Junior Editor Before the election, seniors were encouraged to look at the candidates, take a 2020 political party quiz, and write a reflection on their results. “We talked about the importance of knowing where you stand on issues, and being an informed voter and voting for candidates who will represent those viewpoints in office,” economics teacher Jessica Montgomery said. Many of the students were surprised by the results they received from the quiz. Most of this surprise came from results that weren’t necessarily Democrat or Republican. “I was surprised because I grew up thinking that I was one party, but once I took the ‘istandwith’ quiz in class, it told me that I fit into a party that I did not know very much about,” senior Courtlyn Brown said. Some students weren’t surprised by their results, even if the party they had identified wasn’t the first option. “I was actually not surprised by my results,” senior Cerenity Exline said. “What I thought would be my topic result was actually listed as third, but the two above fell into the same category, so basically my top three were all the same and very high percentages.” This quiz asks hard questions to get the taker the closest result to their beliefs as possible. This is one reason that many of the seniors believed the test was a great idea. “I thought that it was a really good idea,” senior Breanna Flournoy said.

“Most of the time kids just say that they are the same political party as their parents because they don’t do their own research to find out what they actually are.” The results of this quiz are meant to be extremely detailed and accurate. Most seniors would agree with this sentiment. “I do agree with the party it gave me,” Exline said. “I have some very strong stances based off of my biblical beliefs which led me to answering the questions the way that I did.” This activity was meant to be educational. It was meant to teach seniors about politics, and how there are more to the world than one side against the other. It was meant to show that there is middle ground and most people fall there. “I learned that we really don’t know as much as we think we do about politics,” senior Elizabeth Kimberlin said. It is also important for teenagers to do their own research into the candidates that they are voting for. This quiz activity emphasized the importance. “I mostly just look at all of their policies and what they have done in the past,” Flournoy said. “From there, I decided which I believe would be the best candidate.” Sometimes this research can affect their opinions on how the world of politics really is. “Research made me realize that I did agree with many different parties with some topics, which was surprising to me,” Brown said.

Young people can make a big difference in elections; however, they are the group that shows up the least. This is why it is important for them to stay informed, and they should be encouraged to make a difference and vote. “One day, they are going to start voting, and they need to know what’s going on within the country,” Kimberlin said. “I wish I knew a lot more before the election came around because it really made it tougher because I had to learn about it quickly Check it out • Sophomores Delaney Moses, Maddi Riley, Kylie Offerding, Isabell Witt, and Daniela Nunez look at the “No Place for Hate” website. Photo by Addi Wood. and form an opinion.” This election might be one of the most influential for young people. This could shape the future of the country they have grown up in, and it can permanently shape their opinions. This election has caused a lot of revelations in the minds of younger people. “I learned that you need to do projects are expected to be coming point is to promote kindness and unity the research on your own, educate among the student body. soon. yourself on your leaders, and don’t Addi Wood “We want people to try to “We have plans for projects that expect the news or media to do it for Staff Writer will take place over the course of understand everyone’s point of view. you,” Flournoy said, “Go and look Unity is about coming together the year which will help build unity We all have unique perspectives. on their pages at their policies, and as a whole. Here at KHS, that is among our student body,” Mohn said. When we only focus on ourselves, we whichever you agree with, you should our new organization’s entire goal. With 20 members in this miss the beauty present in everyone vote for. No matter what others think, The Unity Committee is dedicated to organization, this shows that students else. We need to learn to see the world you need to follow your own morals making sure school is a safe space for are wanting something like this and from other people’s point of view,” and not others.” everyone. are eager to work towards a common Mohn says. Some seniors have realized how “The Unity Committee is a group goal of unity. This organization proves that we important it can be to keep your of students who have the goal of “This committee proves there are all in this together. We should beliefs to yourself. bringing unity and community to are students who are concerned all work together to make it the best “This election was so suspenseful Kilgore High School and to help create with promoting kindness. This is possible place for everyone. and full of drama,” Kimberlin said. “I a safe space for all students,” Carl important because it is so easy for us “Unity and Equality are two didn’t share or argue my views with Mohn, Unity committee leader, said. to be selfish and only concerned with different concepts. Equality suggests others or tell them who I voted for to “The committee wants to promote what we want. By looking beyond that everyone has (or should have) keep away from all the drama. I plan peace, kindness, and acceptance of ourselves, we are able to see the value equal rights and respect from everyone to do that in the next election as well.” everyone, no matter who they are or of everyone. This leads to fuller and else. Unity means that we are all in what they believe.¨ this together, so we should work for richer lives,” Mohn says. Although the organization has just This idea came from the “No Place the good of everyone. When we all started, they are already working on for Hate.’’ It’s an initiative sponsored work together, there is no problem we three projects. The details of these by the Anti-Defamation league. The can’t overcome,” Mohn says.

Come together Un i t y C o m m i t te e b e g i n s i n K i l g o r e

Exam Schedule T U E S D A Y, D E C E M B E R 1 5

5th & 7th period exams

W E D N E S D A Y, D E C E M B E R 1 6 2nd, 4th, 6th, & 8th exams 1) Voting matters • Senior Elizabeth Kimberlin poses with her ‘I Voted’ sticker. She had just cast her vote in the 2020 Presidential Election. 2) Make a difference • Senior Cerenity Exline poses with her family after casting her vote in the 2020 Presidential Election. Courtesy photos.

T H U R S D A Y, D E C E M B E R 1 7 1st & 3rd exams

Health Science: Drives and Donations Jayden Jones Staff Writer One thing people cling to is a sense of normalcy, or tradition. A tradition KHS has is their blood drive partnered with Carter Blood Care. The blood drives we’ve hosted have been able to open many doors for the KHS Health Science Club. They were recently presented with a check for a large sum of money, $1,000, from the Carter Blood Care Great Grants Program. They try to have at least 5 drives each year. If a senior has given blood twice, they would be able to receive a red cord they are able to wear at graduation. They can also receive the credit if they have another adult donate in their name. “Hosting 5 drives gives seniors extra opportunities in case they were unable to give at a drive,” Coach Cheyenne Kirkpatrick said. With each blood drive, they keep them at least 8 weeks apart. They do this to ensure that a donor would be

eligible to contribute again at the next one. Kirkpatrick is able to brainstorm the days each drive could possibly be held on. “The Carter Blood Care Rep and I work together to select dates and then I turn them in to Mrs. Cox for approval,” Kirkpatrick said. There are, on average, around 70 children and adults who would sign up to donate blood for each drive. Normally, there wouldn’t be that many to show up to donate because of outstanding factors. “There are always some who are unable to give due to low iron, fast heart rate, not feeling well that day, changed their mind, or forgotten permission slips,” Kirkpatrick said. Because of COVID, they have had to adapt to the new changes that have come their way. They have moved the blood drive into a classroom, room 103. She found that the classroom is able to space out the beds for donating much easier, and along with wearing masks ensures that they are being COVID-friendly.

Health Science Donation • Health Science Club poses with the $1,000 check given to them by the Carter Blood Care Great Grant Program. “We worked really hard on the blood drive and during the year to receive this honor,” junior Cason Cox said. Photo by Olivia Arp. “If we were still using buses, they would not be able to see as many donors at a time,” Kirkpatrick said. She thinks it’s much more practical to use a classroom not only because of the pandemic, but also because of the crazy and unavoidable Texas weather. Students aren’t forced to walk into

the plethora of weather conditions Texas may hold whether it’s hot, cold, or rainy. She likes that she’s able to look out for the students easier in the classroom, rather than when on a bus. “Also, it enables us to keep a closer eye on students after their donation to ensure they are feeling well before

returning to class,” Kirkpatrick said. The first drive this year had a lesser turnout than expected. There are different possibilities of why this happened. Maybe people were too nervous because of COVID, or it could just be the cause of less students attending school in person. Kirkpatrick thinks preparations are a large factor in this situation. “I think the main cause was a lot of new donors who did not know how to prepare for giving blood,” Kirkpatrick said. “It is important to eat a good meal the night before and eat breakfast the day of the drive. Donors should also be sure to drink plenty of water leading up to giving. Eating iron rich foods and being well-hydrated are important components to a successful donation.” She likes to think that each blood drive is a success, some more than others. While on average they would collect at least 35 units of blood, there are normally more proceeds that are received during their drives. “Our goal is 50 units at each blood

drive,” she said. The goal of the blood drives isn’t only gaining the blood donations, but to also help the students learn more about blood drives. She wants the students to have a good education and knowledge on giving blood, especially since she started her contributions by donating at KHS when she was still a student herself. “The first time I ever gave blood was at a blood drive here at Kilgore High School when I was a student,” Kirkpatrick says. “I have now donated 23 times (almost 3 gallons of blood).” The blood drives the high school hosted last year has gathered 132 units of blood, and saved 396 lives. In fact, the drives’ success last year is the very reason they were presented with the gracious check this year. Keeping this tradition alive would benefit the people on the receiving end of the donations in this bewildering time. The proceeds will go to Carter Blood Care. The next blood drive will be on January 14, 2021, in room 103. Watch for information on how to sign up.

2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Opinion

Entertainment

Health & Wellness

Dress Up Days

Thankful/ Santa Letters

Santa Letters

Spotlight

Spotlight

Feature

FFA Harvest Fest

Sports


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Opinion

December 11, 2020

Definitely Darling Decoration Debates Jayden Jones Staff Writer It’s no argument that the holiday season is jam packed with different celebrations. There are three major holidays during the ‘holiday season’, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. There is one debate that’s been discussed year after year revolving around these celebrations. When is the right time to decorate for Christmas? This question causes many arguments among today’s youth and adults. People just can’t agree on when the correct time to decorate would be since there are so many options to choose from. Some would say right after Halloween, or they might argue after Thanksgiving has had it’s time to shine. Others might note it’s only appropriate to begin the festive decor out once December hits. Christmas is the most popular holiday in America and brings a certain happiness and feeling to those who are able to celebrate it. It’s the time you get an excuse to spend with your closest friends and family, so naturally many people use this time to their own benefit. Sophomore Jayci Pyle specifically enjoys Christmas time the most out of the entire year for this exact reason. “Thanksgiving is just preparation for Christmas, so it’s basically Christmas time from November through December 25,” Pyle said. “The Christmas vibe makes me happy, so I want to keep

it around as long as possible.” Jayci relishes in embracing the holiday spirit for as long as she can. After all, Christmas time is so popular and exciting, one might as well take as much time to celebrate it as possible. Not to mention the plethora of decoration options to use for this joyous occasion. While the decorations for Christmas are delightful, freshman Hailey Posey thinks that the decor for Thanksgiving are some to also take the time to enjoy. “I honestly think that the perfect time for decorating is sometime after Thanksgiving,” Posey said. “It gives you some time to enjoy all of the beautiful decorations for a whole month and not just a couple of weeks.” Posey enjoys allowing each holiday have it’s moment since each holiday is there for its own reason. Thanksgiving is there to allow us to really share our blessings with others and tell others how thankful we are for what we are able to have, so it’s important to celebrate it in its own time. Another reason why some would think to decorate after Thanksgiving would be none other than Black Friday. Junior Zachary Riggs thinks this is the perfect time to get your decorations prepped, up, and ready to shine. “After Thanksgiving, normally Black Friday is a safe bet because that gives time for Thanksgiving and keeps people away from the stores where they get things that aren’t

needed,” Riggs said. Everyone knows how cute the Christmas decor can be, but along with that cuteness comes a price. That price can be rather expensive, and many families aren’t able to spend much on both decorations and gifts for this winter holiday. Not only does this reason allow Thanksgiving to shine, but you would also be able to get your favorite decor on sale for cheaper than you would think. This time would be a win-win situation for all. Christmas time is sometimes the most important to so many people that they tend to overlook the time of Thanksgiving. While people argue that the festive season overshadows the time of thanks in a disrespectful manner, holidays are holidays. Everyone has his or her own priorities and views of what and why they celebrate what they do, so why not just allow them to celebrate however they see fit? People will always have their own opinions and views of holidays and decorations. One could say it’s pointless to try to change their minds on this ridiculously controversial topic. So, decorate during the week before Christmas, as soon as the leaves begin falling, while eating your Halloween candy, or right after you put the turkey leftovers in the refrigerator. Embrace the holiday season in whatever way is the most pleasing. After all, who cares what others may say about the decorations around the house or in the yard, when it’s definitely darling?

Santa land on Main Street • Downtown Kilgore has beautiful, festive lights up in honor of Christmas and the holiday spirit. We missed the Christmas parade, but the spirit is still here. Photo by Jayden Jones. Welcoming the holidays • Sophomore Jayci Pyle’s house is decked out in darling decorations in the spirit of Christmas. Her family really enjoys the celebration of this winter holiday. Photo by Jayden Jones

GET OFF YOUR PHONE! Pumpkin spice, Peppermint, and everything nice

How much screen time is TOO much? Payton Berger Sports Editor Every Sunday morning I get the joy of receiving my weekly screen time analysis from my phone, and every week I’m still surprised by how much time I spend on the handheld device. I’m usually quick to dismiss people talking about cell phone addiction, but ever since quarantine I’ve seen my weekly chart reach hours I’ve never had before. I often tell people I’d be fine without my phone and probably better off. However, I’m not sure how well I’d react without it. With my daily average screen time often reaching over ten hours, I’m starting to question my reliance on my phone. I know I’m not alone in this concern, for I have friends with even higher numbers than I have. Some people around me have even turned off the notifications for their screen time report because it makes them feel guilty seeing how much time they spend on their phones. I look at things a bit differently, though, for the notifications kind of help me remind myself to put the phone down. The notifications help me, at least for a little. My time on Sunday and Monday are significantly lower than the rest of the week because the alert is fresh on my mind, but as the week goes on my time continues to increase. My screen time isn’t purposeful. I really do set my mind to get things done, but my phone is a major distraction. Almost every time I sit

down to do homework I get distracted by TikTok or my friends in our group chat. I even turned my vibration off on my phone, so I’m not as inclined to look at every notification. This works sometimes, but the temptation to scroll through social media often wins. I do think it’s important to note that it hasn’t always been this bad. Throughout high school I’ve been pretty good at avoiding my phone while doing homework, but quarantine changed everything. The lack of contact with my friends made me extremely reliant on my phone to communicate with them. Whether that be through Snapchat or FaceTime, I was always on my phone. My screen time during this time was insane, but I told myself it was okay due to the circumstances. Honestly, things haven’t changed as much as I thought they would. Although we’re back in person at school, all of our coursework is online. I do a considerable amount of my homework on my phone just because it’s easier than pulling out my chromebook. Classes are quieter due to masks and less group work, so, of course, we get on our phones. With the rate we’re going, there’s not much that can be done to prevent student’s screen time. We genuinely don’t have the option to resort back to paper and pencil. As frustrating as that might be to some people, there just isn’t an easy fix to it now. Although we can’t necessarily stop such high numbers of screen time at school, we do have a say in

how much time we spend on our phones. However, it’s not always easy to stop being on your phone as often. These days our whole life is on a device. The phone is often our direct source of communication, and a lot of people have to have it on their person at all times. I’d love to say I have a full proof plan of how to fix my habits, but I’m still not sure exactly what to do. I don’t even know if there is anything to do in this strange time, but I plan on making baby steps to make my screen time go down. When I have free time, I’d love to spend it reading or journaling. Spending time with my friends by having picnics or going on walks can also help me interact with people while also staying off my phone. There is no real way to escape my phone aside from getting rid of it, but we all know I’m not going to do that. It’s a part of my lifestyle now, and giving it up would be far from easy. I depend on it for almost everything, and I’m not really embarrassed by saying that. I think this excessive screen time might be our future whether we like the idea or not. Technology is everywhere and it’s hard to escape, but it’s also not always a bad thing. Using technology to keep updated on the news, interact with friends and family in a safe way, and even just using it as a form of escapism are totally okay. Rather than beating myself up over my screen time, I hope to use it in a positive way and still take occasional breaks from it.

Holiday themed treats to try Kayla Ridge Staff Writer After witnessing the changes this fall to schools and communities, we have no way to know what may happen next. This year has been the craziest by far. Families get ready for Christmas the safest way they can, students find ways to stay safe and healthy in school, and people work hard during this time to pay bills and feed kids. The year has taken a toll on everyone. What people need is to relax, sit by a warm fire, and drink some pumpkin spice hot cocoa and smell the fresh scent of peppermint. Original hot chocolate has been ingrained in our brains since childhood. The warm brewed beverage reminds us of chilled and quiet days inside our homes. Many memories have been made due to this fantastic drink. Why not spice it up with a little festive spice this year? Pumpkin Spice anything is the best part of fall. The moment when you are sitting around the dinner table and you reach over that Cherry Crumb cake just to get a bite of the perfect

pumpkin dessert that you have been craving all year. However, pumpkin spice has not been around forever. Pumpkin spice flavoring has been around since 1936. This ‘invention’ was and is still used to this day to make baking a tasty treat easy. Therefore, bakers could bake a mean pumpkin spice dessert without having to deal with the mess a pumpkin can bring. Desserts that have this festive spice baked into them include: Muffins, Donuts, Fudge, Cheesecake, pie, cake and so much more. Now, do not think that pumpkin spice is the only flavor for this fantastic time of year. Peppermint is at the top of the list with pumpkin spice. (Just ask Starbucks.) The iconic peppermint flavoring is wellknown. The original peppermint was first thought of as a remedy for colds, but now it has come a long way. From medication to baking, peppermint has been a significant part of our history. There are peppermint fans everywhere. There are many desserts that have peppermint baked into the warm tasty treats. These include: dream desserts, chocolate bars, pies, and even cakes. With these amazing dessert flavors there seems like nothing can go wrong.

Coffee shops have put pumpkin spice lattes and peppermint mocha on their menus to brighten up the holiday spirit for many different people. Pumpkin spice is in the top three best selling drinks at Starbucks. The two perfect flavors are great separate, but when combined together the flavors spark something in your brain similar to one of the scenes in the movie Ratatouille. Sipping the hot brewed drink makes wonders and enlightens the world around us. A pumpkin spice peppermint hot chocolate just before a big day at school or even at work can make our day go by fast and easy. When drinking this drink our body decides to calm down and relax. So whenever you want to finish a project that you may or may not have decided to procrastinate on, drink a warm cup of hot chocolate. This will get you through the project with ease. Even though original hot chocolate is delicious, spice it up by adding peppermints. Don’t stop there. Add some whipped topping and a sprinkle of pumpkin spice. Now you have a festive cup of hot chocolate that can get you through this unusual time in our world. We have all earned a treat in 2020.

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1. Time for hot chocolate •

Multitasking at its finest • A student scrolls through social media while completing her Google Classroom assignment. Photo by Payton Berger. The Mirror is a member of the Interscholastic League Press Conference ILPC and earned the Award of Achievement from ILPC and UIL in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020. The Mirror earned the Award of Honor in 2007 and 2010. The Mirror earned the Award of Distinguished Merit in 2008, 2014, 2015 & 2016. In 2014, the staff was nominated for a STAR by the ILPC. The Mirror adviser is a member of TAJE. The Mirror is printed at the The Henderson News. The Mirror staff distributes 1,000 copies to the students and the community, free of charge. Editor’s note: Students of the month and Teacher of the month are chosen by administration & faculty committees.

Three mugs of hot chocolate are held together in preparation for a long Christmas Project. 2. Full circle • Spanish teacher Tristan Clements drinks Hot chocolate with two of his 6th period students, sophomores Bethany Mcwilliams and Ani Garner. Photos by Kayla Ridge. 2

The Mirror Staff Writers Carley Dollins Carmen Vazquez Cerenity Exline Ryan Cartwright Jayden Jones Addison Wood Kayla Ridge Rachel Niemeyer

Kilgore High School 301 N. Kilgore Street, Kilgore, TX 75662 903.988.3939, ext. 2137 www.kisd.org/khs Student Population 1140 Volume XXI, Issue II December 11, 2020 KISD Superintendent Dr. Andy Baker Principal April Cox Bulldog Publications Adviser Amy Bates Editors Olivia Arp- Editor in Chief Faith Jones- Managing/ Copy Editor Payton Berger- Sports Editor Carly Mauldin- Junior Editor Madison Donovan- Junior Editor

Page Designers Carly Mauldin - 1 Payton Berger - 2 Olivia Arp - 3 Faith Jones - 4 Madison Donovan - 5 Staff - 6 Staff - 7 Faith Jones - 8 Olivia Arp - 9 Faith Jones - 10 Olivia Arp - 11 Payton Berger - 12

The Mirror is the student newspaper of Kilgore High School and is published in print form four times a school year by the advanced journalism class. This publication shall strive to serve the interests and needs of the readership and to be fair and accurate. Staff members were selected after completing one year of journalism. Comments and views expressed in The Mirror reflect the thoughts of individual writers and do not reflect the opinions of other students, staff members, faculty, administration or the Board of Trustees. The Bulldog with Mask graphic on page one is courtesy/creation of Amy Anderson and Tracy Wingert and KLEM1410.com. We are not responsible for people not wearing masks in Courtesy Photos. We do our best to make sure mask guidelines are followed in our photography, but if a student is pictured without a mask, we make sure our photographer is 6 feet or more away from the subject and the photograph takes no longer than a couple of minutes to shoot. The athletes pictured fall under the mask/COVID safety guidelines laid out by the UIL and our ISD. See the editors in Room #124 if you have questions. The Mirror welcomes signed letters of opinion, but retains the right not to print them. *It is the policy of Kilgore ISD not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex or handicap in its vocational programs, services or activities as required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.


3 ‘Charlie Brown Classics’ leaving television page

Entertainment

December 11, 2020

Kayla Ridge Staff Writer While getting ready for this Christmas break there is a lot of planning ahead to do. From safe trips to the special day with family and friends. Sitting around the Christmas tree watching everyone open presents or just laying back on your comfy couch watching movies with the family, we can all say that we have plans for this upcoming break. One main family tradition that has changed this year has affected the way people are going to do things this Christmas break. The traditional Charlie Brown Specials will not be airing on TV this year and further on. Now for many families this would have changed their plans, but do not fret, Apple has come up with a plan for the many families who love seeing Charlie and Snoopy on their TV screens.

Apple announced on Oct. 19 that it had acquired the three main Charlie Brown holiday specials. Rather than Airing on ABC as they have in recent years, the specials will be available exclusively on the company’s streaming platform, which costs $4.99 per month. Thankfully, there is some good news to this devastating fact. Instead of having to pay for another subscription, Apple TV is making all three classics available to watch for free for a limited time. Granted, $4.99 per month can add up to a great amount. However, with the subscription, you can watch the Charlie Brown classics along with other great entertanment, but if you are not willing to pay for another subscription there is an alternative way to do so. A Charlie Brown Christmas will debut on Apple TV starting Dec. 11 and ending Dec. 13 at 7:30 p.m. The special will be available at no cost through Dec. 13. You’ll just have

Will concerts return? Don’t get your hopes up Carley Dollins Staff Writer Due to COVID-19, entertainers have been unable to perform live. For most artists, performing live in front of thousands of their fans is one of the most important things. Sadly, artists had no other choice but to postpone their events or completely cancel them. This obviously left fans sad and frustrated, but most people understand why it had to happen. COVID has left an impact on many experiences, but people have found ways around traditional experiences. Restaurants have moved to outdoor seating, meetings can be held on Zoom, and drive through museums and movies are on the rise. Virtual concerts have also started happening more frequently, but many fans complain that it’s simply not the same experience this way. Although many artists have been creative and found new and interesting ways to connect with their fans, it’s hard to replicate the feeling of a live concert. There’s really nothing like seeing your favorite musicians live in concert and being a part of a massive crowd of people. These live shows are the highlight of many people’s year, so them being impossible to attend now has put a damper on many people’s moods.

While people have proposed the idea of socially distanced concerts with mask mandates, it’d be rather hard to actually achieve such a thing. The concert experience would not be the same being socially distanced, and people would remove their masks to eat or drink. Dr. Kristen Dean, board-certified physician and medical director at Doctor on Demand said that, “The social aspect of traditional live music concerts makes it difficult to transition to a scenario where concertgoers are asked to enjoy the music in a socially distanced setting.” She definitely brings up a valid point, for many people would still be dissatisfied with their concert experience in a socially distanced environment. In addition to this, experts agree that the virus needs to be much more under control for live events to take place again. They suggest a herd immunity, meaning 75% of the population must have received the vaccine or survived the infection. The U.S. is nowhere near this point, and attempting to reach that level without a vaccine will most likely cost us millions of lives. Concerts are fun, but they’re not worth losing that many lives over. The CDC says that a vaccine most likely won’t be available until mid-2021 for average Americans, so

Freshman Zachary Dry “I am very excited that there is an alternative way to watch them.” Sophomore Drake Williams “I would always nuzzle near the TV and watch the Charlie Brown specials.”

to download the Apple TV+ app to watch. Agreed, downloading another app to your smartphone and TV will be knocking your storage down, but doing so adds to your family memories and experiences. This year has been really crazy and nothing can beat Charlie Brown and his ‘Good Griefs’. You cannot miss the spectacular scene from the Charlie Brown Christmas special where the Peanuts theme song cuts in and everyone is dancing on stage. Charlie walks in and Lucy steps forward to introduce the new director. Everyone on stage applauds - except for Snoopy who ‘boos’ him on stage. Man’s best friend, indeed. So, when you are preparing for this long relaxing Christmas break, make sure to download the Apple TV+ app and sit back nuzzled into a warm blanket watching the Original Charlie Brown Christmas special along with your family.

there will be a bit of time before we are able to attend these events again. If you’re anything like me, you had plans to attend live events this year that were eventually postponed. This was the year I was going to see all the artists that I’ve been waiting to see. I had the opportunity to get tickets to go see Harry Styles with my best friend the day after my birthday this year. Now, we have to wait until next September to hopefully be able to see him in concert. I can’t lie, these events being canceled have been some of the worst impacts of the pandemic on me. These were the events I was most looking forward to, and having them be canceled is heartbreaking. Especially since we really don’t know when we’ll be able to attend events like these again. There’s so much unknown, and concerts are obviously not the number one priority right now. At the rate everything is going, I wouldn’t be opposed to a socially distanced concert, but I also know the experience wouldn’t be quite the same. That’s one of the major reasons I’m okay with waiting it out. I truly understand that safety should be our number one priority. It might not be fun to wait it out, but experiencing a real concert when everything is better will be well worth the wait.

1. Living their best lives • Seniors A’viana McIntyre and Shelby Maring and former student Lauren Couch attend a concert in October 2019. Courtesy photo. 2. Thumbs down • Senior Donovan Adkins shows his disappointment while holding concert tickets to a show that was cancelled. Photo by Payton Berger.

Junior Kaileah Pierre “My Aunt Val collects Snoopy action figures and used to show them to us when we were really little.” Senior Chamya Sammons “Thank goodness that I can watch the kid with his blanket in Charlie Brown.”

REMOVED

Netflix takes down some fan favorites Rachel Niemeyer Staff Writer As many have noticed, several beloved shows have been taken off of one of the top streaming services in the world. Netflix. Netflix is home to over 3,000 movies and a plethora of shows, but with that, several are constantly leaving to make room for new arrivals. Many fans have already mourned the losses of their favorite shows and movies such as Parks and Recreation, The Addams Family, Green Room, several Disney movies, Ocean’s Eleven, Ocean’s Twelve, Ocean’s Thirteen, The Bachelor, Zodiac, West Side Story, and more. Most of these shows or movies were removed for rights issues and can now be found on their own streaming services. For example, most Disney or NBC-owned shows can now be found on Disney+ or Peacock (by NBCuniversal). The problem with these other services, though, is that they add an additional cost to your monthly Netflix subscription fee. If one is paying for himself rather than being part of a family account, this can turn out to be a wild and expensive inconvenience. A pro to Netflix, however, is their patented Netlix Originals. So many excellent shows and movies are Netflix Originals and can’ t be watched anywhere else. Some notable titles include Stranger Things, Bojack Horseman, Big Mouth, The Crown, Queen’ s Gambit, Peaky Blinders, Ozark, Master of None, Glow, 13 Reasons Why, Selena The Series, Atypical, The Great British Baking Show, and John Mulaney and the Sack Lunch Bunch. Netflix has been meeting people’s entertainment needs since 1997. It continues to be among the top streaming services in the world with over 183 million paying subscribers as of March 2020. Unfortunately, bustling business means that Netflix is constantly expanding, and that means that they may ocasionally have to remove a fan-favorite show or movie. This sad news does bring benefits, though. Netflix is coming out with several new series and movies that are sure to measure up to the adored films they are replacing.

Dodgers vS. Rays: Evaluation of 2020 World Series Ryan Cartwright Staff Writer The World Series is the time where players showcase their skills and potential. This year the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays faced off in the Fall Classic in Arlington, Texas. It was a battle of pitching staffs and offenses. The Dodgers, with Cody Bellinger, Corey Seager, Walker Buehler, Mookie Betts and Clayton Kershaw, battled the Rays who were a team that surprised everyone with the way they played up to this point. The Rays were made up of standouts Randy Arozarena, Blake Snell, Tyler Glasnow, and Kevin Kiermaier.

Luckily, the MLB allowed fans to be able to attend this year. The series started off with the Dodgers taking game 1 by a score of 8-3. That game the Dodgers started Clayton Kershaw and the Rays started Tyler Glasnow. A cool fact about Tyler Glasnow is that he had a medical procedure done on his throwing hand which makes him grip a fastball different than some players in the league. But even with this grip, he is still able to throw 100 mph, which is crazy. This year was a weird year for baseball. The season was shortened from 162 games to 60. Teams had to figure out how to manage their teams as the season was much shorter than years before. The World Series had both teams

going at each other with all they had. One game, one team would win, then the next game, the other team would win. I would say this year was more exciting than past years. Each game was filled with great defensive and offensive play, and great pitching. Blake Snell in Game 6 was some of the best pitching I have ever seen live. Just the way he was able to keep the batters off balance and able to get deep into the game to give the bullpen less work. Eventually, he was pulled by their manager. That’s when the Dodgers gained momentum and after the game hoisted up the Commissioner’s Trophy. After 32 years the Los Angeles Dodgers finally won it all.

1) Hunter Pipak -“I was glad the LA Dodgers won the World Series after many years of upsets.”

2) Bryce Long - “I really wanted the Rangers to win but at least it was played in their stadium.”

3) Kyle Wheeler - “I was happy to see Kershaw get back to his normal self, dicing guys up left and right.”


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4 Health & Wellness

December 11, 2020

Reindeer are not the only things to look out for this holiday season How to stay safe from the pandemic during this holiday season

Madison Donovan Junior Editor

The COVID-19 pandemic has been stressful and isolating for many people. Gatherings during the upcoming holidays can be an opportunity to reconnect with family and friends that you might not have seen in a while. However, it is important to remember your health and the health of those around you. It’s important to consider modifying holiday plans to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 epidemic is worsening, and larger family gatherings are an important contributor to the rise in COVID19 cases. The reality is that hosting large parties, traveling to see friends and family, and brushing off masks and social distancing can have serious consequences that extend far outside of your own circle. The good news: With some modifications, you can still make the most out of the “most wonderful time of the year.” If you are not in a high-risk group it is not entirely crazy to meet a few people in the safest way possible, but the holidays won’t be able to be celebrated in the traditional way, so try to think about how you can be flexible. The safest gathering is one that is a small, stable group that meets outdoors for a short duration and uses face coverings, distance and other safety measures. It is important to remember that any events that have people outside of your immediate family will increase chances of exposure to the virus. If meeting with a small, stable group of

your family is important for your holiday plans, it is recommended that you avoid activities like getting a haircut or attending indoor events in order to reduce your chances of exposure. Here are some very easy and simple ways to keep yourself and your family safe during this holiday season: Gather outside and follow safety regulations The risk of transmitting COVID-19 is higher in closed spaces than open spaces. This is why it is important to remember that holding bigger family gatherings may be safer outside. Remember that while it may be hard, it’s safer for everyone to follow social distancing guidelines. Keep gatherings small by limiting them to less than three households. When people from different households are together at the same time in the same space, the risk of spreading COVID-19 goes up. We understand seeing family is important but limit the numbers to keep each other safe. Keep a limit on the time The longer people gather together, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spreading. That’s why gathering for longer than two hours is not recommended. The amount of time you spend indoors makes a difference to the build-up of viruses in the air. From a contact-tracing perspective 15 minutes of sitting within 6 feet of someone indoors is the definition of “close contact”. Shorter visits are therefore better than longer visits. Keep this in mind while planning any festive activities. Do not participate in multiple meetings with different people

Family Outings • Junior Eryka Hopper’s family meets for Thanksgiving dinner. They met outside for maximum air flow. Courtesy Photo.

The more people come into contact with others outside their household, the higher the risk of spreading COVID-19. That’s why participating in multiple gatherings with different households is strongly discouraged. If you attend several gatherings over the holidays, keep it to the same group of people. Be aware of how you and your loved ones are feeling Take your temperature before you gather. If you are running a fever or feel ill, stay home. If your guests aren’t feeling well, tell them to stay home. If anyone in your

planned gathering thinks they might have been exposed to the virus, stay home. The CDC suggests self-quarantine for at least five days before going to spend time with your family. This way asymptomatic transmission would go down. Even though five days isn’t enough for complete safety, any time away from the public proves to be beneficial in stopping the rate of transmission. COVID-secure your home. There are many ways of reducing the risk of transmission indoors, including disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, wearing a mask,

maintaining a 6-foot distance from others, and using separate bathrooms. Ventilation is particularly important, and in well-insulated modern homes a single open window may not be enough. Air flow is particularly important this year because that is what will limit the transmission inside closed spaces. Learn to politely say no You may not feel comfortable or safe with family members coming to your house or you going to visit theirs. There isn’t anything wrong with that. It can be difficult to push a loved one away if they approach you for a hug or invite you indoors. To avoid seeming rude you could think through potentially awkward situations and try to prevent them. Try to frame your saying ‘no’ as an offer, rather than a rejection. For example, don’t say, ‘don’t come near me’, but rather ‘shall I keep my distance so I don’t infect you?’ instead. Remember your table manners Avoid touching things that other people have touched, including shared food dishes. Ideally, guests should bring their own crockery and cutlery, and take it with them when they leave. Think carefully about who does the washing up. It shouldn’t be the person most susceptible to catching the virus. Also remember that when the guests leave, the virus will likely remain in the house, so it’s best not to have the most vulnerable person hosting an event. Focus on how memorable this year’s holidays will be This holiday season is going to be different than any other we have ever witnessed. You may not remember exactly what happened

at the holidays from year to year, but when something this different happens, it’ll stick out. Things that go wrong often make the best memories. This exceptional holiday season will probably be more memorable because it’s so different. We just have to find a way to make the most of it. Remember the true meaning of the holidays The holidays are a time of love and spending time with family and friends. However, spending time with family and friends is going to be difficult. It’s important to remember that just because you aren’t with them physically, doesn’t mean you aren’t together in spirit. This is a time of difficulty, and we need to remember that we aren’t going through this alone. Your family and friends will always just be one phone call away. Try not to worry about physically seeing them, and take the time to call and remind them you care. Be sure to be cautious before the holidays, too. No one likes being sick during their break from school and working, and your family doesn’t want to miss your smiling face. Be sure to wear a mask and social distance in public leading up to the holidays. We understand that this holiday season is going to be completely different than any other anyone has experienced before. It’s going to be difficult to change a routine that many families have had for years. However, for the safety of yourself, your family, and your community, consider making adjustments to a few of your holiday plans. Brighten the holidays by making your health and safety a priority!

The ins and outs of your nose Faith Jones Managing Editor

How has COVID-19 affected your school year? “It has affected my friendships with my peers because we can’t get together like high schoolers should.” Freshman Grace Reese

How has COVID-19 affected your school year? “We don’t get the same amount of learning we did before, and I need more help than I am getting.” Sophomore Arely Rojas

How has COVID-19 affected your school year? “It has made learning harder because I personally cannot learn at home or on a computer.” Junior Trenton Wolf

How has COVID-19 affected your school year? “The masks are annoying, and I hate online because I have less of a drive to do it.” Senior Daniel Estrella

The Rundown

COVID-19 is definitely the defining trait of the year 2020. Not only is it a pandemic that has claimed the lives of many people all over the world, it’s completely changed every aspect of day to day tasks including school, community events, and hospital protocol. One thing that seems to not be discussed enough is the COVID swab and the different ways to be tested. Most commonly, people just fear and avoid the swab at all costs. The fear of the COVID nose swab comes from social media scares. The truth is, the swab is not nearly as bad as you think it is. Fear creates tension which only increases the pain inflicted by the swab. Obviously, discomfort is always expected but it’s easier to find comfort in the test when you know what you’re in for. The conductor of the test, usually an experienced doctor, will remove a long stick from a bag and prepare you by asking you to tilt your head as far back as you can. If possible, do this. It allows for a much easier entrance and exit of the swab so that it’s quick in and out. The swab looks different from the flu test swab. The swab for the flu, typically, is cotton and more round. The COVID swab is much thinner and could be compared to a pipe cleaner. Once you have your head tilted back, the swab is inserted into the nose and twirled for about a few seconds. Some

conductors of the test will ask that you take three deep breaths out of your nose for the best, most accurate results. After this, the swab is removed and the test is sent away to be analyzed. In Gregg County, there are three kinds of tests. At CVS there is a swab you conduct on yourself, at the Kilgore Christus Good Shepherd ER there is a blood test, and the Longview Hospitality Health ER does the infamous nose swab. To be tested at CVS, you first call your local CVS and request to schedule a COVID test. Once availability is confirmed and the appointment is scheduled you arrive in your vehicle where you will need to present your insurance card and proof of identification. In addition to this you will need a phone number or email to receive your results by. Testing at the Kilgore Christus Good Shepherd ER involves needles to execute the blood test for COVID screening. This test will tell you if you are COVID positive as well as if you still have the antibodies. This test is beneficial because some positive cases actually appear to be asymptomatic, so the person typically won’t know that they have the virus. This is dangerous as although this person feels fine, they are still able to spread the illness. The test is free if you can provide proof of residing in Kilgore. They are open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.. The mobile screening requires you to stay in your car in a line. Once your vehicle reaches the mobile unit you exit your vehicle with a mask on and have a seat under a canopy where vitals are taken and the doctors get your

personal identification and confirmation that you live in Kilgore. Once this is done, you enter the mobile unit where you have a seat and a doctor draws your blood, labels it, and sends you on your way. The testing part only lasts about five minutes. This is the preferred testing method if you find that you would rather be stuck by a needle than suffer through the invasive nose swab. At Hospitality Health ER in Longview, you must present with COVID symptoms to be treated and tested. This option is more for if you are sick. It runs just as any other ER, you drive up to the canopy, list symptoms, and park in the COVID center where you are treated from the vehicle until a room is available in the COVID wing of the ER. You will need to fill out the typical hospital forms and provide proof on insurance. To specifically speak on the test, they use the infamous nose swab. Most times, if admitted, you will have to endure two of these swabs. The first swab is analyzed at the hospital where you will receive the results after close to an hour. The second swab is sent away to a lab. After 3-5 days the ER will call with the results. Ultimately, testing methods are personal preference. Would you rather have a nose swab or a blood draw? And even then, are you interested in swabbing yourself? It is important to recognize that getting yourself tested when you have not been exposed to COVID or you are not experiencing any symptoms is unnecessary. Continue to wash your hands, wear your mask in public, and stay home if you are feeling sick.

An insider’s opinion on COVID in schools Olivia Arp Editor in Cheif

In many areas of the country, students are simply learning at home, hoping and praying that at some point this year they may be able to walk into the school building. In Texas however, classes are in full swing with many schools not even offering a remote option at this point. With Kilgore deciding to offer in person learning and taking away the remote learning option at the end of first quarter except for stuents with medical needs, there are many protocols and guidelines the school must follow. “When a kid comes into my office there is a checklist I must follow, and I listen for them to say something that catches my attention,” nurse Melissa LeBlanc said. “Different symptoms are more COVIDrelated and if they have a certain amount of those symptoms, we call home.” To avoid sending home everyone that walks in her door, the nurse has to pay attention to said symptoms to know whether to give them a cough drop or recommend them to be tested. “We have had to make and take lots of phone calls,” LeBlanc said. “We call parents and the other campuses to ensure younger siblings are not at school while having a sibling in quarantine.” These phone calls are non-stop with parents being called about COVID cases or calling in their child’s positive case. “Keeping up with consistently changing statuses and guidelines can be tedious, but it ensures we are following rules to keep our kids safe,” LeBlanc said.

Despite following protocol in the school and doing everything possible to keep cases low, the high school saw a spike in numbers in early November. “When our numbers started to spike, we had to handle the potential cases as best as we could,” LeBlanc said. “We have a COVID room now where potentially sick kids go and are assessed while they wait for their parents to arrive to pick them up.” With the number of cases that were arising, it makes one wonder why exactly so many kids started to come down with it. “I believe that gatherings outside of school are what caused our cases to rise,” LeBlanc said. (This is a personal opinion and has not been proven fact. It should not be taken as factual.) In response to the spike of cases, the official school protocol has not majorly changed but has been reinforced. “I have observed in contacting teachers about cases that everyone is better about wearing their mask in class which will help us not have another flare,” LeBlanc said. In addition to being better about wearing masks, the school has changed their policy for kids who were simply exposed to a positive case. “Exposed students can now get tested and return to school after being tested on the 5th day of their quarantine,” LeBlanc said. “They have to return with a negative test result which may take a few days after testing.” Quarantining occurs when a student either tests positive or when they are directly exposed to someone who has tested positive. During quarantine a student is gone for roughly two weeks and is required to keep up with his or her school work. “[Remote learning] has been a necessary evil but I definitely feel like it has made

my job harder to make quarantine learning work,” English teacher Amye Tucker said. “Not seeing students face to face makes it not necessarily easy to forget but to keep up with and remember those who are going in and out of school.” Being at home can be difficult with the hardest part being missing specific instruction that can help clarify assignments; this can affect a student’s learning “When students have to quarantine, we can clearly see that there is lower class participation from these students,” counselor Carey Murphy said. “This seems to happen because many don’t know what to do when they go from in person to online.” It can be hard to keep up while at home but the best way to stay on top of things is to constantly check your school accounts. “Students need to check their email, Google Classroom, and Skyward daily,” Tucker said. “This is vital for students staying connected.” The best way to avoid these difficulties caused by quarantining is to stay well and avoid exposure. “Wearing your mask, washing your hands, and social distancing will help keep you well,” LeBlanc said. “You should always be aware of the people around you and it can help to treat those people as someone who might be positive.” In order to keep spirits up during this odd year, Principal April Cox has some remarks thanking the school for their cooperation. “As we continue to strive to slow the spread of COVID 19, I am thankful to the students and staff for your compliance of the new guidelines this school year,” Cox said. “Your can-do attitude and willingness to embrace these changes during unique times is nothing short of inspiring.”

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2 1. CVS Pharmacy • Test yourself for COVID-19 by going through the CVS drive thru. 2. Hospitality Health Er • Recieve two COVID-19 tests administered by doctors at this Longview ER. 3. Kilgore ER • Christus Good Shepherd Emergency Center in Kilgore offers blood tests for COVID-19. Photos by Faith Jones.

3


Dress Up Days

December 11, 2020

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Red Ribbon Week 2020-2021

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Juniors Karlee Menges and Tierney Willis show off their college shirts for the College vs. Pro day.

English teacher Johna Tritt proudly wears her mustache for the Mustache vs. Beard day.

Journalism teacher Amy Bates and sophomore Jayden Jones show off their spirit overalls on the Red vs. White day.

English teachers Natalie Threlkeld and Emanuel Ibanez show off their outfits for Colors vs. Monochrome day.

Senior Braxton Green and Assistant Principal Lauren Thrasher show off their support of their teams on the College vs. Pro day.

Spanish teacher Tristan Clements shows off his last minute outfit for the Colors vs. Monochrome day.

Italy VanZandt and Principal April Cox show off their outfits for the College vs. Pro day. Juniors Abby Hattaway, Madison Weaver, and seniors Carter Williams, and Hailey Espinoza show off their school spirit for the Red vs. White day.

Senior Victoria McFadden shows off her custom school spirit shoes for the Red vs. White day.

Sophomore Danna Requena and health science teacher Angel Galvan show their outfits for Checkered vs. Plaid day.

Freshmen Azema Ray and Kaylee Thompson support their favorite teams on College vs. Pro day.

The counselors show off their outfits for the Checkered vs. Plaid day. Senior Payton Berger and cheer sponsor Nikki Offerding pose for a picture showing off their SFA merch for the College vs. Pro day.

Senior Britney Castillo shows off her outfit for the Checkered vs. Plaid day. Sophomores show off their Bulldog red for the Red vs. White day.

Junior Noah Estrada shows off the mustache attached to his face shield for the Mustache vs. Beard day.

Senior Daniel Estrella wears a “mustask” for the Mustache vs. Beard day. Media teachers show off their outfits for the Colors vs. Monochrome day. Senior show off their school colors for the Red vs. White day.

Senior Victoria Hampton shows off her Yankee jersey for the College vs. Pro day.

Juniors Ashaw Bailey and Kylee Lakey joke around on the Checkered vs. Plaid day.

Seniors Chelsea Pierson & Bryce Long show off Juniors Eryka Hopper, Tierney Willis, Karlee Menges, their school pride on sophomore Kyndal Collins, and teachers Kathy Bowden & Red vs. White day. Mary Grush participate in Checkered vs. Plaid day.

Junior Faith Bonds shows her school spirit with her spirit overalls for the Red vs. White day.

Photo Credits: - Yearbook and Newspaper Staffs - Yearbook Editor Eryka Hopper - Yearbook Editor Courtlyn Brown - Yearbook staffer Kayla Rios - Newspaper staffer Kayla Ridge - Newspaper staffer Carley Dollins - Yearbook staffer Katherine Shupe - Yearbook staffer Jimena Espinoza - Yearbook staffer Ashaw Bailey


6 Thankful & Santa Letters

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Sometimes, well MANY times, people skip RIGHT over Thanksgiving and go straight to Christmas. Before we are accused of that...the Mirror Staff reached out in October to some of our favorite former teachers on other campuses to help us all focus on what is most important... being thankful. These THANKFUL letters come from students in Christy Cavel’s 2nd grade class at Chandler. Thanks, Mrs. Cavel! We also included some fabulous thankful art/letters from Shelbi Korzeniewski’s Kindergarten class at Kilgore Primary School. Thanks, Mrs. K! I am thankful for my mom. Jasper Carpenter 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for Mrs. Cavel because she is so nice to me. She is my most favorite teacher. Mrs. Cavel. I love her. I love school. School is my most favorite place ever. School helps you learn and Mrs. Williams helps us read. She is my most favorite teacher, too. All of my friends are nice to me. K. Clark 2nd grade I am thankful for my family because they are nice to me. I am thankful for Miss Cavel because she is nice. I am thankful for Miss Williams because she is my reading teacher and she is fun. I am thankful for the school. Paisley Roberts 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my mom and Dani and my sister and my pop in Houston and my uncle and my aunt and Jesus. Patrick Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my friends because I can play with my best friends. They are amazing. We play in the playground. Rohan Patel 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my family because I love them so much. I love my mimi and I love my mom, too, and my sister, too and my dad and my aunt and my brother and my uncles and my cousins. I love when they give me food and water. Me and my family have God in us. I love my Nena too. I love them So much. I miss them so much. Emma Trice 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for Mrs. Cavel because she teaches me well. And, she is nice. And, Mrs. Cavel is an amazing teacher. Maggie Stephens 2nd grade I am thankful for my family and friends and Mrs Cavel. Because my dad is funny and nice. My mom is nice and she is silly. My brother is fun and silly. My sister is sweet and silly and helpful. I am thankful for my friends. I have Harper who is fun and silly. I have Kaytynn who is sweet and amazing. I have Laken who is funny. I have Karter who is funny, too. I have Maggie who is sweet. I have Jade who is sweet. I have Donna who is trying to make a friend. I am thankful for Mrs. Cavel because she is the best teacher in the world. I have Levi who is funny and silly. Madison Schaefer 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my house and food and my school and my friends and my family. I got the best Mommy. Kadarius Powe 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for the game Doom because it is the best game and Minecraft because you can find treasure in the heart of the sea and more. I am thankful for the Lord because he made this world. Greyson Autrey 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my friends. I am thankful for my dad. I am thankful for my teacher Mrs. Cavel. Jayden Allison 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my family because they help me and they are good to me everyday and that’s why I help them too. And God will always be with us and that’s why I love them at all times. Laken Nichols Mrs. Cavel 2nd grade I am thankful for my family and friends. I love them a lot and alot. I also love my dog. I also am thankful for my teacher and my cousin. My family and me are always with Jesus and God. I miss my Poppa from my Poppa’s funeral. Brayden Lee 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for school because they help us learn and make friends. You can learn more stuff in school. You can learn how to read. Jordan Sliwinski 2nd grade I am thankful for food because it

tastes very good. Food keeps us alive. Colton Hinson 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for Mrs. Cavel. She is the best teacher ever. Harper Sanders 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my family because I love them and I have one brother and one sister. I feel bad because he has to work. I love my family. Rylan Jones 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my cousins. I am thankful for my friends. I am thankful for my mom. I am thankful for my brother. I am thankful for my whole family. I love Mrs. Cavel. Jade Schmidt 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel

on all of us. For this Christmas, all I want is a good amount of snow to fall in East Texas. I think we all need this year to end on a good note. Thank you Santa! Sincerely, Allison Williams, freshman Dear Santa, For Christmas this year I don’t want things. Things are simply that, things. They lose value. What doesn’t lose value are people. I want our world to come together and unite. We are divided by our religious, political, and social views. We need to come together and understand that everyone is different and we all don’t have the same views and opinions about things in order to get along. The one thing we do have in common is that we are all human beings and we should have acceptance and tolerance for everyone whether they

they need as well because that’s more important than a want. Sincerely, Allyson Hallett, sophomore Dear Santa, I have been somewhat good this year except for a few arguments with my mom and sisters. I would really love to have a new pair of joggers and a hoodie to go with it. I could also use a comforter for my bed. For my sisters, you could bring them a Barbie house. They would really like that. We could use a new car for my family to make it easier for my parents. Thanks! Sincerely, Tanis Hewitt, freshman Dear Santa, I want a ps5 and a hellcat car and 1 million. David Colbert, junior

I am thankful for my family because my family is blessed with Jesus blood. Donna Patin 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel I am thankful for my family because I am good for them. Like my cousin Harlee and my sister Kendyl and my mom and my dad. My family is perfect. Karter Gugliuzzi 2nd grade Mrs. Cavel Who doesn’t love second grade letters? Thank you, guys, for reminding us what is important. As we left November behind, KHS Students wrote Santa Letters through their email accounts and submitted them to the KHS Mirror. Many students seem to have the same wish: Health, Happiness and Peace for all! Please enjoy these letters and Merry Christmas from the Mirror! Dear Santa, I don’t really want anything for Christmas but what I have always wanted was to be with my whole family on Christmas Day and this year that might actually get to happen now that my family has moved here. Emilee Hampton, senior Dear Santa, I have been trying to focus on the positive and be very calm. I’ve been focusing on my sports life to win state for my school with all my spirit, enthusiasm, and pride, I always have the feeling that I have a good chance. What I want for Christmas is everything to be balanced in life. 1. Adidas Pants with red stripes 2. Beyblade Burst 3. Adidas Jacket. 4. Adidas Superstar Shoes Black and Gold 5. Real Madrid Jersey Danna Requena, sophomore Dear Santa, Can you fit Phil Swift In a stocking? Avery LeBlanc, junior Dear Santa, I want the world to have peace and for political views to not be every one’s business. Nathanneal Hampton, junior Dear Santa, All I wish for this year is that the year 2020 ends off on a good note. Because of the virus going around, 2020 has been messed up since March, and I hope that it can get better before this year ends. I know that everyone on Earth is tired of hearing about this virus, and we all wish that it would go away. Now since this virus is here everyone is having to wear a mask and not everybody likes the idea of having to wear one to school and other places. Yours sincerely, Lucas Tyson, sophomore Dear Santa, As you know, this year has been difficult. I bet even you had to start using COVID regulations at your workshop. It must have been hard finding that amount of small masks to fit all the elves. 2020 has been hard

December 11, 2020 start on guitar. There is not much I ask this year but I want things to go back to no wearing masks, no social distancing, no looking back when someone coughs or sneezes, and stop the rate of deaths in the world. There are too many people not with us anymore because of this, so I would like for you to help us with that. And I want for us to be watched over and protected on these holiday breaks to all come back and return in great health to be in school. Alicia Lagunes, senior Dear Santa, What I want is impossible to have and it also seems a little childish. I want to relive my 7th grade year. It was one of the best years of school that I’ve ever had. Everything then just seemed so simple and less complicated. I had my best friend, and I could actually see my dad who lives over 300 miles away. But with the pandemic, I haven’t been able to see him all year, and I really miss him. And my best friend isn’t my friend anymore, so now everything is complicated. I just want my life to go back to normal. No masks, no distancing rules, and a father that I could see every few months. Just a normal teenage life. Graycie Jordan, freshman Dear Santa, All I would like for Christmas is the Xbox Series X. I wish everyone a good rest of the year and good health. Trent McDaniel, sophomore

think and believe differently than us or not. Santa, things wear out, kindness and unity does not. Thank you and Merry CHRISTmas to all! Nikki Lafitte, faculty/staff Uh, hello, Santa, I would like my gift to be for you to take covid to the north pole. Juan Solano, freshman Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is medicine that will keep us from getting sick with the flu. Have a safe flight and don’t forget masks for you and your reindeer. PS: Make a hole in Rudolf’s mask so his nose can stick out. Richard Croxton, faculty/staff Dear Santa,

I want to buy makeup and pink clothes or shoes and iphone 12. Michelle Sanchez, senior Dear Santa, I want a new iphone for Christmas, and I want to spend time with my mom’s side of the family and my dad’s side also. I think I will really love that to celebrate with both sides of my family. All I want is to be loved and warm. I love both sides of my family so much, and that’s all I want for Christmas is to be with them. Italy VanZandt, junior Dear Santa, I would like a new pair of airpods, madden 21, and 2k21, and a new pair of kyries. Braxton Green, senior Dear Santa, The only thing that I want for Christmas is for my friends and I to be happy. Ceannie Sanchez, sophomore Dear Santa, I’m not sure what to ask for. I don’t need anything, really. God has blessed me with a lot. So, I guess what I really want to ask for this year would be for others who don’t have as much to get everything they want for Christmas. Also..not only everything they want but everything

Dear Santa, I know that these past years I haven’t been writing to you, but I wanted to do so this year. My only few wishes for this year are that Covid-19 gets resolved quickly, with as little injuries as possible. This is asking for a lot, but it can save thousands of lives. My next wish is that my school district is able to raise a lot of money so we can have more resources to use for our education. This is vital for our success not only in life, but as a species. My next and final wish is that the world will eventually see that fighting with one another isn’t right. We should be solving all of our problems with words, not violence. I know that most of the world doesn’t like what other countries

do, but death is never the answer. Sometimes, being a pacifist could save the entire world. If we are all able to come together in peace, just think of all of the things we could do! Exploration would be increased, as well as resources. So Santa, please, if possible, grant my wishes. For the world, and our children. Alexander Diggs, freshman Dear Santa, This year has been super tough for everyone and we’re all going through our hardships. For Christmas, all I want is for everyone to be happy and to feel appreciated. We’ve all done our best this year either by working on ourselves, or helping each other grow and we need to know that we are all loved. Love, Analyse Thomas, junior Dear Santa, I just want fuzzy worms (They’re toys.) and to have every single color that there is. It’s simple to be honest, I saw it on tiktok it was cool, and I said to myself that i want one. Tiffany Rodriguez, freshman Dear Santa, I want for you to help those who are getting Covid-19. I want you to stop those who are not being treated equally. I want a guitar. I have played ukulele and would like to

Dear Santa, All I want is for Donald J. Trump to be president for 4 more years! Ethan Ojemann, junior Dear Santa, If it is not too much of a problem, could I please have a trip to heaven to visit my Granny this year? I really miss her, especially this time of the year. Papa would be there with her. I just know he would. I would get to see him, too. They were my place of safety and stability for so long. I want to show them pictures of their grandbabies and their greatgrandbabies, yes, and even their great-great-grandbabies! I just need one more of their hugs. I just need one more batch of Granny’s biscuits. I just need to hear one more of Papa’s stories. And, Santa, while you’re at it, could you bring my sweetie a new smoker and grill? He really needs it! I’ve been so blessed this year that I don’t want anything that I can think of. Bless my family with the things that they want. Peace on earth and good will to men! Merry Christmas everyone! Hug the ones you love! Miriam Cooper, faculty/staff Hi to who may be reading this. I hope and pray you have a Great Christmas. I hope you enjoyed school this year, and I hope you get everything that you asked and prayed for. And Santa Claus is always watching, remember, so you gotta be good and listen to your parents, or you won’t get that beautiful doll or that awesome toy truck you wanted. Always listen to your teachers. I know sometimes you think you don’t have to or maybe you don’t want to but please, with a cherry on top, will you listen and I bet you’ll have an awesome/great Christmas. Tanyha M. Sanders, senior Dear Santa, I want a doggy and a gumball machine. Cameron Lewis, senior Dear Santa, I wish for this COVID to be over to have a senior year. I want to play soccer with the best team I could ask for one last time! I ask for more work for my parents in the oil field. Also for my brothers to be as successful as they can! As well as for all the other seniors to make the best of what’s left! Jackie Estrella, senior Dear Santa, I honestly don’t care what I get for Christmas. I could get mismatched socks for all I care. I just want my boyfriend and all of my friends to have a good day, a good rest of the year. I refuse to let those I hold dearly have a terrible day or a terrible rest of the year. I know it’s a simple wish, but it’s an important one.

From, France Nicole Faries, freshman Dear Santa, I would love for Santa to bring joy and peace to our world. I know that is hard to ask for but I feel as if that’s what we all deserve. Hailey Posey, freshman Dear Santa, I would like a PogChamp. Jaime Baldazo, sophomore Dear Santa, For Christmas I want a pogchamp and perhaps a kappa if you could spare. Samuel Clements, sophomore Dear Santa, I would like an PS5 for Christmas and to end covid 19. Isaiah Leon Ryan, freshman Dear Santa, This year I’m not asking for much. I just want to see the people around me happy. I want to see all of the people I love most smile. That’s it. I hope that is possible. Merry Christmas! Hailee Cochrane, freshman Dear Santa, For Christmas I want her. Just her. Please. Aiden Lothrop, sophomore Dear Santa, This year the thing that I want for Christmas is for every little kid to get what they want and that is the only thing I want. From, Ashaw Bailey, junior Dear Santa, Well, I want everyone in my family to have a good Christmas and all my friends to have a good day with their loved ones, but what I really want for Christmas is my dad. I miss my 11th Christmas with him. He got me a sleeping bag to go camping ha ha. I still have it. I wish I could go back in time and re-spend time with my dad. That is my Christmas wish, and I hope everyone else has a good Christmas this year. My wish may never come true. I haven’t really been at my best. I’ve gotten in a lot of trouble, and I’m sorry. Brookelyn Overman, freshman Dear Santa, The thing that would make me the most happy is the return of normalcy to the world. If I had one thing to wish for, it would be the disappearance of the virus that has changed so many people’s lives. My senior year has been drastically different than the ones of those before me, and I wish that didn’t have to happen. I am content with the physical things in my life, but I do wish to be able to have the last year of high school that I’ve been wishing for for so long. Hylyn Lumpkins, senior Dear Santa, This year for Christmas I only ask for a few things. First and most importantly I want the pet fish I already asked my mom for. It was the one thing I really wanted from her and you know what I got instead? A snake. The woman left to buy me a fish and returned with a snake. I like him and stuff but I still want that fish. I also want some form of an immune system. I’ve spent most of high school sick at home and then making up for those sick days in Saturday school. In addition to this, I would greatly appreciate it if you could get rid of the rona. I’m tired of getting my hopes up for things and having them cancelled due to the omnipresent pandemic. This is my senior year, and I only get one of these things. If it’s actually impossible for you to make the pandemic disappear, then I’ll settle for the best version of a senior year you have to offer. Finally, I have a personal request. My brother is quite literally insane, and he makes babysitting an Olympic sport. It would make me so very happy if you could come up with some way to help him chill out. Anyways, that’s basically it for the dark year of 2020. I think these requests aren’t over the top, especially since that one Christmas when I wanted the Barbie Dream House and didn’t get it - you owe me. Faith Jones, senior Dear Santa, This is Dante. I have been good all year but I will not ask for much. All I ask for is an Mk11 or persona 5 or dragon ball fighterz.(Yes, they all are games.) Dante Domer, junior Dear Santa, This year for Christmas I would like either a pet Opossum or a Ferret. They are both super adorable, and I want to freak my mom out. Also, I’d like a new backpack that’s still big. Mine doesn’t have enough pockets. Have a safe trip flying presents! Kara Malick, junior Dear Santa, I would like money and a lot of it. A bike would be nice and lots of batteries. I also want good grades. Darius Morrell Powe, freshman Dear Santa, For Christmas I want pink and green Joy-Cons for my Nintendo Switch, the game Super Mario 3D All-stars for the Nintendo Switch, and a new pink and green Splatoon pro controller. That’s all. Aidan Luna, freshman


Santa Letterspage7

December 11, 2020 Dear Santa, My name is Lizett Julia Garcia and I am 14 years old. This Christmas I would like a clear phone case, a goldcolored seashell necklace, a mermaid face mask, and an avocado squishy. I would also appreciate it if you can give my little sister the Barbie Dream House. Thank you for reading my letter. I promise to leave you milk and cookies under my Christmas tree! Merry Christmas, Lizett Garcia, freshman Dear Santa, I would like some shoes and money. Jada Graham, freshman Dear Santa, For Christmas this year I would like a new pair of boots. Katherine Shupe, junior Dear Santa, For this Christmas, all I ask for is happiness. It has been such an overwhelming year where it felt like everything was going downhill. So. for this Christmas. I wish for happiness and health all around the world, but especially for my family and loved ones. Carmen Vazquez, senior Dear Santa, For Christmas this year, I would really love it if me and my family could gain a Christmas miracle. My mom’s foot isn’t doing so well. She has had surgery on it, and it was doing well until recently. My other mom has been very stressed lately (I think it’s because of the holidays). Last but not least, I would love it if I could have some miracle to help me with my grades throughout high school. I’m trying so hard to keep them up so I can get a scholarship and get into a good college to become a paramedic. I know it’s a lot to ask for but hopefully one of these will come true. Jayden Davis, freshman Hello Santa, This year has been filled with multiple tragic and traumatic moments for me, so all I want for Christmas is peace of mind, body, and soul and time for myself. Even just for a little bit. Thank you! Shanna Casayuran, junior Dear Santa, What would I want for Christmas you may ask? I am wanting a new laptop with Windows 10 on it. Joseph Hicks, senior Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is A Colby throwing his hands up poster. Benjamin Dover, sophomore Dear Santa, For Christmas, I wish for my friends to get presents.For my best friend Rosemary I think she would really enjoy a week to relax, sometimes stress can really wear her down. For my other best friend Kayla I want her to get the biggest blanket that she will be able to wrap herself up in as many times as she wants and a cool Hogwarts mug. My friend James, he really likes earrings with weird designs so I hope he gets a bunch of earrings he likes. For my friend Drake, I know he would enjoy a sock advent calendar. Probably one that is Mandalorian themed. For Sara, I know she really likes history, so I think she would enjoy a book on the Dark Ages or on French History. Bethany McWilliams, sophomore Dear Santa, I want clothes and shoes. Candace Lee, freshman Dear Santa, How are you? How are your reindeer? I hope they are doing well. I want to tell you my wish-list. What I want for Christmas is to be able to get into the school of my choice and be able to make enough money to raise my family with. I also wish for my family to stay healthy and be able to stay with me throughout the years I live in. Well, thanks for listening. With hopeful wishes, Heavenly Sky Pastor, freshman

away from the magic of the season over the last few years, rejecting the idea that happiness could exist in the midst of nothing but sadness. I think some of my sadness around the holidays comes with growing up. You peek behind the curtain and realize how the magic happens. The lights are a bit less glittery because you’re the one putting them up. But also, losing people is a part of growing older, there’s always the chance that the people at your Christmas table this year might not be there the next. My little brother loved Christmas. He was the embodiment of goodness and kindness but he’s gone now. All that’s left to remind me of the Christmases before his loss are the ever fading memories of my perfect holiday cheer. I have never stopped wondering how Christmas could ever be the same. However, I find solace in the knowledge that people all around me are also grieving and struggling to rekindle their own Christmas cheer and yet are able to find things to believe in. That belief is the true spirit of Christmas and the whisper of hope I cling to. The hope in my heart that endures and the yearly Christmas letters I continue to write signals to me that I must still believe in your magic. My letter every December asks for the same thing, what every broken heart yearns for, I wish for time. Time together to hold my brother and tell him I love him, to again feel the love and happiness of my youth even if it’s for a short while. This year I ask once again for that time, but the time to cherish what I have in the now and to have hope for the future. The world is lost and lonely this season and we’re all in need of some solace. This year I ask for the ability to break the barrier we’ve built in our individual protective isolations. Remind us of the comfort within that six foot distance that divides us. I ask for the ability to know in our hearts that we are not alone in our loneliness this season. With every “Merry Christmas” uttered through a mask, and every conversation had through a screen let us remember that the world is closer in understanding each other than we’ve ever been. Let our combined social distance bring us closer together. I believe that this understanding for one another’s situation will lead to the true spirit of Christmas like no year before. Please place hope in every heart this year; that is what I want for Christmas. Love, Maci Bowne, faculty/staff

Dear Santa, For Christmas this year I wish for COVID-19 to end. I’m sure you’ve heard that a million times but it’s what I truly want. While I haven’t had it, it has been bad for a lot of people I know. It still has affected my life. My Mimi is the only grandparent that I have that lives near me and that I’m close with. And, I haven’t been able to see her as much as I would like due to COVID-19. She just turned 80, so me and my family really don’t want to spread any illnesses to her causing us to distance ourselves from her. I can’t even remember the last time I hugged her. She is my best friend, and I used to go see her every week and now we just have to text everyday. I am grateful that I can still talk to her through texts and calls, but I just really want things to go back to normal so I could spend more time with her. Addi Wood, sophomore

Dear Santa, As you know, 2020 has been a year for the books. We’ve fought countless battles, bush fires, protests, and pandemics and you, Santa, were there for none of it. Because of your frequent unexplained absences, I feel at the very least, you owe the children on the world stocking stuffers. I-being one of those children, request that you give me nothing more than time to do my work! Like I said earlier, the days are starting to run together and I do not have nearly enough time to finish school work, college applications, essays, scholarships, work, and STILL have time to get AT LEAST 8 hours of sleep. In conclusion, Santa, forgive my bluntness, but I feel that I am owed this. Thank you for your time. P.S. If the whole, add extra hours to the day, thing doesn’t work, I’ll accept any socks or blanket. Brooklyn Hall, senior

Dear Santa, Christmas was always a beacon to me. Christmas for me was delightfully defined by nights with family lost in long conversations and card games with goofy prizes. It was looking at Christmas lights while drinking hot chocolate. A busy mall full of energy and long lines that for once didn’t seem to bother anyone. The holidays wrapped up each year with a glittery bow no matter the hardships of the previous months. Christmas for me was hope, light and everything we need now. Well, Santa, my adult heart has turned

Dear Santa, I think it’s pretty evident that 2020 was not a very ideal year for anyone. To best put it, this year was full of emotional roller coasters. We had protests take place all over the country from March-November, a highly contagious virus that spread like wildfire throughout the globe, and we even got to witness one of the most controversial presidential elections in history. That being said, I’m not entirely too sure what I would like for Christmas. I think what would please everyone,

including myself, having a period of time that does not consist of any chaos. Also, I think it would be reasonable to say that a solution to the COVID-19 situation would be a great present. Lastly, I would really appreciate a raise at work. Ruben Estrella, senior Dear Santa, My Christmas 2020 wish is to say Thank You Bulldogs for all the memories. As I approach my retirement from Kilgore PD and my departure from Kilgore ISD I reflect on the past 18 years filled with many great moments and memories. I have had the privilege of working with amazing faculty, staff, administrators, and students. I can honestly say this has been my honor and privilege. As I prepare for my future as Constable I have a challenge for you… Seek opportunities to serve something greater than you.

see anyone at Thanksgiving. I know we are not guaranteed tomorrow, so if this holiday season is the last I get to spend with a loved one, I hope it is the most meaningful and memorable of them all. I hope to cherish every moment as I already do not get to see some loved ones that often sometimes, especially this year with the whole pandemic going on. And I know it is a long shot, but I would love to see my family in Idaho again. Maybe not during this Christmas season, but sometime soon. It’s been a few years since I’ve last seen and visited them, and I’m ready to go back. I miss them all dearly. Above all, I wish that people would not forget the true meaning of Christmas, the celebration of Jesus’ birth. Jesus is the reason for the season, and I hope that people will not stray from that this holiday season. Cerenity Exline, senior

so much, but those two things hold a special place in my heart, and getting that chance would mean the world to me. I know most teenagers are probably like “Make the pandemic go away,” or “Get rid of corona, please,” but seriously that’s what I want this year. Perhaps if that is something out of your pay grade, I could settle for new camera equipment. I love photography, so that’s an ideal gift for me. Anyways, thanks for all you do each year Mr. Claus - don’t forget to stay safe out there, ‘rona doesn’t pick favorites. Courtlyn Brown, senior Heyyyo, What’s up, big guy? I’m not really picky, but I’d really fancy some Capri Suns. Strawberry Kiwi is highly preferred. Could you put in a good word for me with Bigfoot? I’ve reached out to him several times, and I’m worried about him. He’s a sensitive guy. Fanks, luv. Rachel Niemeyer, sophomore Dear Santa, All I want is for a boy to love me. I will pay him all my money. Please. Just hide him under my silly little tree in a silly little gift box. I’ve been quite lonely this year, and I have simply had enough. Thank you, bestie. Delaney Moses, sophomore

Students...My wish for you is for you to have bright futures and continued success. Teachers...My wish for you is strength to influence, inspire, and encourage. Administrators...My wish for you is to be a guiding light that illuminates the path to success for all. Until our journey brings us back together, Be Successful. Sergeant Richard Stanley, School Resource Officer

Dear Santa, For Christmas, I would like to have a Nintendo Switch. I want to be able to play Animal Crossing with my younger cousins. Along with that, I would ask that you give my family what they want, too. We have had a hard year with everything that has going on, and I feel like they deserve something that will make them smile on Christmas. Thank you, Madison Donovan, junior

Dear Kris Kringle, It has definitely been a crazy year. I’d like to say I’ve been good this year, or at least I tried to be. I have a few things I would like for Christmas this year, but none of it is something you

Dear Santa, Hey, all I want for Christmas this year is Park Jimin. If this request is too crazy, I will settle for a cardboard cutout.

could buy from a store. The first thing I want to wish for this year is peace. Peace for our country and nation. Peace for our world. Peace for everyone. Things have really been crazy lately and everyone has been so tense, so I first wish for peace. I know that for some the holiday season can be hard for different reasons, such as losing a loved one or for a different reason, so I wish that they could find some joy and happiness through the hard time. I know of some people dear to me going through different trials in life, and I wish that this holiday season they could find some peace, comfort, and happiness in this time. Yes, I do enjoy receiving gifts from others, but to me, the best gift is presence. I’ve learned over the years that being able to just sit and visit with a loved one is so much more meaningful to me than receiving an actual gift. Their presence is a gift and the only gift I wish for. I wish to get to see and spend time with those I love. I wish to get the chance to see my extended family and two of my great grandparents. I don’t really get to see them except for maybe once or twice a year, usually at Christmas and Thanksgiving. Even if it means I see them from a safe distance and with a face mask on, I wish to get to see and spend time with them this holiday season, as we did not get to

All the love, C (Carley Dollins, senior) Dear Santa, Hey there! My request this year is rather simple. I want to receive Harry Styles under the Christmas tree. I know it might be rather hard to kidnap a 26-year-old man, but if anyone can do it it’s you! If that’s too much, can you get rid of COVID? Thanks so much! Love, Payton Berger, senior <3 Dear Santa, This year I want Spotify Premium. I am filled with genuine rage every time I have to hear the same three second intros to the ads they overplay every thirty minutes, so I feel like it would be best for my mental health to just switch over. Thank you for considering my request. Sincerely, Carly Mauldin, junior Dear Santa, I have all that I could ever ask for, and I am thankful for that. What I want for Christmas are all opportunities that come with a senior year. I want my prom and my graduation, and I want to be able to throw my hat with the class of ‘21 and dance forever at Maude Cobb in May. Santa, I know you can only do

Dear Santa, What a YEAR! This has been one that we will all remember. I am sure even the North Pole has been affected by the coronavirus by now. During this experience, I have tried to focus on the good that we have learned. Being at home with family is important, and it is my favorite place to be. It is also a place that we should work hard to make our favorite place. That takes effort and focus. Being at home last spring when the world was quarantined made me do projects that I would have never done if I had been out running around like we usually are. We spruced up our patio, cleaned out closets, refurbished items, and donated items that were not being used. It has felt great to take time to care for myself and my family even though I missed my normal life. The coronavirus has also brought new ideas to education. Who would have thought educators would all be making videos for students, having Google Meetings instead of in person meetings, teaching virtually, and sharing our lessons with students the way we have? That has been lifechanging, and there are things about it that I don’t ever want to go back to “normal”. I am so GRATEFUL that our district has provided our students with Chromebooks. This has given the students a confidence and a power and a part in their own learning. It is also teaching them responsibility like never before. Though parts of the pandemic have been difficult, the pandemic has also made us think outside the box for solutions to problems. No more do we say we can’t do that. We look for ways to accomplish our goals knowing that there is a solution somewhere. That is SO exciting to me. We are tenacious. We also are a lot more conscious of our health. Sometimes in the busyness of life, we forget to focus on that and take care of ourselves. In my classroom this year, I see students using the antibacterial hand sanitizer we provide, cleaning up their own messes and wiping up keyboards and computer mice with antibacterial wipes for the next person. We have not only begun to care for ourselves, we are helping take care of others. That makes me happy. Of course, I hate COVID19 and all the illness it has caused. I am sad for the people who have missed school and activities due to quarantine or illness, and those who have lost their lives. But, there have been some things come out of this pandemic that have caused all of us to become better people. We are problem solvers. We are Zoom and Google meeters. We are using technology to make our world better. We are caregivers. Santa, I want health, peace, and happiness for all for Christmas. Always, Amy Bates, teacher

Dear Santa, This Christmas I’d like to have a safe holiday with family all around, and no new covid cases around me and my friends. I would love to have a great and fun Christmas break without any problems. I don’t ask for anything but a safe community filled with great, joyful citizens. Jose Jaime, junior Dear Santa, I would like Ian Somerholder, Tom Holland, and Liam Hemsworth for Christmas. I would also like a Chameleon or a hamster. Bailee Burns, freshman Dear Santa, I don’t really want much for Christmas other than the ability to pick between my two schools for next year. I need to figure out how to make an official decision. I also really want to receive some significant scholarships from either of my schools because that would make my decision much easier. If you can’t do or assist in either of those issues, please just get rid of COVID19 or at least make 2021 a better year than 2020. It would be nice to have a normal school year again. Thanks, Olivia Arp, senior Dear Santa, I want a truck load of squishmallows and cookie dough for Christmas. Please tell Rudolph I said Hi. Thank you and Merry Christmas! Jayci Pyle, sophomore Dear Santa, What I want for Christmas is changkyun from Monsta X. This may be unreasonable, so I guess I’ll settle for concert tickets. STAN MONSTA X! A’Viana McIntyre, senior Dear Santa, I really enjoy Christmas. I look forward to Christmas every year because of how happy and cheerful everything is. I hope everyone is safe from coronavirus! For Christmas, I would like to have a normal second semester of my senior year. Most importantly, I would really really love to wake up on Christmas morning, walk into the living room, and graze my eyes upon the one thing I have always wanted and never managed to get...(btw that’s kind of rude) so I want a Gal Gadot waiting to greet me in my stocking. Please, don’t be alarmed. I know it is weird, but I heard that the girls are asking for some man called Harry Styles, so I figured I’d shoot my shot... Kobe. Sincerely, Chase Borders, senior Dear Santa, The only thing I want for Christmas is a lifetime supply of Goldfish. Thanks, man. Carter Williams, senior My Main Man Mr. Claus, I don’t know what I want for Christmas this year. I almost feel guilty for asking for anything when the entire world is lacking so much. I will write this anyway, because my gal Booklyn asked me to write this months ago and never did. I want to be able to watch any movie and read any book I want for the first time. The Notebook and We Were Liars aren’t as good when you know the ending. I want a playlist of my favorite songs from every year of my life; I feel like that’d be really cool. I want a book full of every single thing that has ever been said about me. Why? Because I’m kind of a narcissist. I also want to pass both of my December Minimesters. Please. I am begging you. I also want an off button because sometimes I would like to just turn off for a couple hours and just not be. I also want the best cookie recipe of all time if I don’t already have it. Thanks, nobody rocks the color red like you. Rachel Bowman, senior Dear Santa, For Christmas this year I would like Dylan O’Brien in a stocking. Under the tree I would like a pretty box filled with three million dollars. The last thing I would like is a whole new closet because my clothes just aren’t it. Thank you, Santa! :) Sincerely, Kilee Menges, junior Dear Santa, For Christmas this year I would like air pods, one million dollars, and for everybody who reads this to cashapp me @$haliefhanks Thank you in advance, Halie Hanks, senior Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is to be a billionaire. Sincerely, Scotlyn Hampton, senior Dear Santa, This year for Christmas, I think I would enjoy having a white ground to step on. In Texas, it tends to be extremely hot, and the snow we get doesn’t normally stick. For these reasons, I would like to ask for a nice, white sheet of snow awaiting me when I get out of bed. It would be a great way to wake up in the morning. I would also like Matthew Gray Gubler for Christmas, if at all possible. I love him dearly, and he brings me immense joy. If you can’t get me Matthew, that’s okay. In replacement, I would like to receive a candle that has his exact scent. Sincerely, Jayden Jones, Sophomore


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8 Spotlight

December 11, 2020

November Student of the Month

Juan Vega

Juan Vega is the November Student of the Month. He is a four year band member, earned second place and qualified for state in Skills USA Team Health Knowledge Bowl, received a Dewey award for best characters at a film competition, is a member of NHS, is in the top ten percent of his class and has been voted class favorite and handsome for the past four years. Juan has been very involved throughout high school. After graduation, he plans to attend Kilgore College to earn his Associates Degree in Nursing, after which he hopes to work as a registered nurse in a hospital. “I plan on majoring in nursing because I like helping and making people feel better,” Juan said. “I see myself working as a nurse practitioner in a hospital, in charge of the oncology floor.” Aside from the various school activities Juan participates in, he manages having a job as well. He works at Walmart as a fresh food stocker in the afternoons. “My favorite part about Walmart is the friendships I have with coworkers and managers,” Juan said, “And getting employee of the month.” Juan has built many relationships with classmates and coworkers alike, but his best friend by far has been his mom through and through. “My mom is my best friend because she is both the sweetest person I know and is brutally honest with me,” Juan said.

Although his mom is his best friend, Juan has a different relationship with his dad that brings him encouragement and influences him greatly. “The person who has had the most influence in my life is my dad,” Juan said. “My dad has taught me how to work hard and not to stress over small things, because it’ll take time away from working. This is something I carry with me every day.” While Juan has found success in school, his biggest struggle has been the drive to school on cold winter mornings. “My biggest challenge during high school was driving to school the entire winter without letting my windows defrost and going down Highway 31 with zero visibility,” Juan said, “I have learned to get up, go turn my truck on, and then get ready for school.” Juan was active in many school activities, and found success in some of them. Band has been his favorite school-sponsored activity. “Band is my favorite school activity because it’s where I connect with the most talented kids in the school and where I hang out with my best friends,” Juan said. Outside of school, Juan had the educational opportunity to take part in Upward Bound, which is a program for kids who are potential first generation college students. “Upward Bound is my favorite outside of school activity because it prepares me for college and gives me opportunities I wouldn’t be able to experience otherwise,” Juan said. “Upward Bound has taken me on college campus visits

and connected me with college counselors and administrators, as well as taken me on a trip to Washington D.C., New Orleans, and the Grand Canyon.” Juan’s number one pastime is spending hours on end scrolling through TikTok. He can spend anywhere from two to four hours on the app. “When life brings me down I find myself going on TikTok until I either see that there’s no more light outside, or when I start hearing birds chirping,” Juan said. Juan’s favorite memory is nap time, throwing it back to pre school in Mrs. Terrio’s class. “The class I miss the most is Mrs. Terrio’s Pre-K class, because nap time on those mats hit different,” Juan said. Juan is appreciative of Mrs. Tucker because she taught him the most. “Mrs. Tucker has taught me how to be confident in my writing and myself,” Juan said. The teacher that has impacted Juan the most is Coach Kirkpatrick. “She’s encouraged me to pursue a career in the medical field and always helps me in any way she can,” Juan said. Graduation at the end of this year has haunted Juan some nights although it is a day he has looked forward to. “My biggest fear about graduating is not having a graduation at all or tripping on stage…I had a dream once,” Juan said.

~ Faith Jones

November Student of the Month

Senior Alexis M. Anderson was selected as November student of the month. She was Miss Kilgore 2020, a 3-year class favorite, 3-year beauty nominee, a 2-year All-A honor roll student, Academic All-district, and the NHS Treasurer. She also has played on the varsity volleyball, basketball, and softball teams. After high school she plans to attend TJC for two years and earn her AAS (Associate of Applied Science) through the nursing program and later attend UT Austin for two years and earn her BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing). “I have always wanted to be a nurse, even when I was younger,” Alexis said. She looks forward to working in a hospital one day because she has always admired nurses and their constant willingness and efforts to help people. “I wish to be one of the best nurses in my hospital one day,” Alexis said. Her favorite school activity she has been involved in was volleyball. “Every year that I have played, I experienced the best memories with my teammates and coaches,” Alexis said. Coach T has had the biggest impact on her throughout high school. Even though she never had her in a class, she coached her since her freshman year. “A lot of who I am today is because of her, and she has always believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself,” Alexis

said. them in my life,” Alexis said. The teacher that taught her the most Also over the summer she was a part of during high school was Mrs. Tucker. It the Black Lives Matter rallies taking place in was her first AP class, so she had to learn Longview. a completely new way of doing things. “Being a part of something that brings “Although this class was difficult, Mrs. complete strangers together, such as these Tucker always found a way to make her rallies, was so moving and heartwarming,” classes smile and tried her best to keep us Alexis said. entertained and comfortable,” Alexis said What she fears most about graduating Her favorite memory in a class was would be having to go to an unknown place, anytime she was sitting on Mrs. Tucker’s such as a college, and know absolutely no couch. one. “I would recommend you to sit on “It is intimidating and a little sad for me Mrs. Tucker’s couch at least once before to think about and I hope I can make friends you leave KHS,” Alexis said. quickly at TJC,” Alexis said. Her biggest accomplishment from her Her most memorable moment out of four years at KHS would be never getting her high school experience was last year’s a B, a temporary ID, or a tardy. football game against Pine Tree. “It amazes me that I’ve been that “I had such a fun time at that game, and consistent for the past four years,” Alexis it was fun watching my team play my old said. school and come out with a win,” Alexis As far as outside of school, the most said. influential person in her life is her Nana. Her proudest moment during her years at She looks up to her and can only dream to KHS has been seeing how much the class of be as loving and caring as her one day. 2021 has grown. “She is the kindest soul that I know,” “It has been bittersweet watching my Alexis said. friends and classmates grow up and take Outside of school she loves to spend these next steps in their lives, and I am time with her friends. Her two closest beyond proud of all of them and how far we friends are Jaiden Thompson and Miah have all come,” Alexis said. Thomas. Although she had a great time in high “These girls mean the world to me school she is very excited to see what the and they bring me so much happiness, future holds for her in her college years. ~ Carley Dollins~ Carley Dolins confidence, loyalty and love, and I truly do not know what I would do without

Alexis M. Anderson

November Employee of the Month Jay Dean teaches forensic science, and coaches football and all district track, as well as sponsors Beta club. “My favorite activity that I am involved in is football,” Dean said. “We have tried to build a program that people would be proud of.” Before coming to Kilgore High School, he went to school at Winnsboro High School and the University of Louisiana Monroe where he got a degree in Health & Human Performance and a minor in biology. His most memorable moment from school is running in the sprint relay in the Louisiana state track meet, and the most influential teacher he’s had in his life was Mary Bondurant. “She was very demanding but fair,” Dean said. “She always expected my best work each day.” Outside of school, the most influential person in his life has been his father.

Jay Dean

“He treats all people the same,” Dean said. “He always had high expectations for my brother and I and pushed us to excel.” The accomplishment he is most proud of in his life is getting to teach both of his daughters. “My daughters Hunter and Madison are both college grads,” Dean said. “Hunter is a Dr in pharmacy and Madison is working on her masters to work with autistic children.” If Dean could sit down and talk with anybody in the world, he would choose his grandparents to talk about family and all the things they like to do together like hunting and fishing. However, if not them, he would like to talk to Tony Pungy, a professional football coach. “I would like to discuss different aspects of coaching and dealing with different character issues,” Dean said, “and everyday struggles as a coach

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and family member.” Dean considers his wife to be his best friend. “We support one another and talk about everything,” Dean said. “We enjoy doing things together.” When he’s not teaching or coaching, Dean loves to spend his free time with his wife and daughters, as well as hunting and traveling. “Three things that most people don’t know about me,” he said, “are that I met my wife in a flood, I played church basketball against Tim McGraw, and I like to cook.” As had many other teachers and administrators, Coach Dean has struggled to juggle mask mandates, social distancing, and remote learning this year. However, he continues to work hard to educate and inspire his students every day in all the things he is involved in.

~ Carly Mauldin


Spotlight

December 11, 2020

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December Student of the Month Senior Jeffrey Kyle Wheeler is the student of the month for December. He is a part of NHS and a three-year A honor roll student. He was also a three time style show participant. Kyle is in the top 10% of his class and also does Advanced Co-Ed dance and plays baseball. “I’m not entirely sure why I got this,” Kyle said. “Maybe I was just on my best behavior and some of the faculty and staff noticed.” His favorite school activity is baseball off-season. He says it’s an opportunity to bring a group of guys together through struggle and hardship. “Nothing is ever given to you,” Kyle said. “You just have to go out every day with hopes of making strides as a person.” Kyle says he’s learned the most in his government class, but world health research and baseball off-season are the classes he will miss the most. “My biggest challenge this year was probably just the balancing of social life

Jeffrey Kyle Wheeler

and academics. It’s nice to have both of those aspects be great but difficult to maintain at a high level,” Wheeler said. The most influential person in his life are his parents. He also admires Mr. Galvan and Mrs. Nash. Kyle says that both have kind hearts and a lot of admirable qualities. “Awards like these, going to state sophomore year, and some of the friendships I have built over the past few years are what I am most proud of here at Kilgore High School,” Wheeler said. Kyle says that when life brings him down, he tries to wake up the next day with the mindset of making everything better. “I don’t have a particular favorite community involvement or community service,” Kyle said. “I just like being able to help someone when they ask me to.” Kyle enjoys hanging out with friends during the school year and during the summer, he likes to focus on weight lifting. “I’m not really a single best friend type of guy,” Kyle said.

“I have a lot of good friends with all sorts of different backgrounds, and I would like to keep it that way.” Kyle says that weightlifting puts him in a relative frame of mind. He likes that he can go in and make goals every day. It’s an opportunity for him to change himself, he says. “I applied to Texas A&M because of the great alumni,” Kyle said, “as well as the beautiful campus.” Kyle is undecided right now on a major but his general interest is the medical field. He hopes to see himself ten years from now with a nice-paying career and a wife. “After graduating, I am anxious about growing up and all of the responsibilities that growing up entails,” Kyle said.

~ Addi Wood

December Student of the Month

The Student of the Month for December is Rachel Bowman. Rachel is involved in the National Honor Society, is Senior class president, drama and Anchor club president, has completed her freshman year of college already and is top 20 in her senior class. ¨The thing that makes me the most proud of my time at KHS is the way that I’ve utilized my time,¨ Rachel said. ¨I made a lot of connections and memories in my time here, and I’m proud that I can truthfully say that I loved being here and got something good out of it.¨ When she graduates, she hopes to attend the University of Texas at Dallas and major in psychology. ¨I want to attend UT Dallas because I will have easy access to big cities while still staying within my comfort zone,¨ Rachel said. ¨A large part of me wants to not only help, but understand people, and that is something I can do with Psychology.¨ Throughout her high school career she has grown to love her theatre class and all the acting. ¨I have participated for the last four years and it has shaped my personality and made me a much more bold person,¨ Rachel said. ¨It has also given me good memories from rehearsals, trips,

get-togethers, etc.¨ Her theatre class has also been the class that has taught her the most. ¨My theatre class has taught me that sometimes people really don’t deserve for you to care about them, and often if someone is trying to force their way into your life, it’s because they want to take something from you,¨ Rachel said. ¨It also taught me just to take in all the good moments and try to record them, because years in the future you’re going to want to remember all the moments and people who have come and gone.¨ The teachers who have had the biggest impact in Rachel’s life would have to be Mr. Mohn, Mrs. Tritt, Mr. Williams, Mrs. Tucker, Mr. Nix, Mrs. Corp, and Mrs. Lockman. ¨They have all sharpened me in some way,” Rachel said. “They’ve all either challenged and pushed me or have been a friend or a source of comfort,¨ They’ve also all believed in me, despite whether or not I believed in myself at times.¨ As much as adults have helped her, the most influential people in her life would have to be all of her friends. ¨My friends are easily the most influential people in my life, and I really can’t just list one,¨ Rachel said. ¨Good or bad,

every friend I’ve had is someone that has taught me something important, whether that’s someone who kept me safe or someone who encouraged me to take risks.¨ Even though she does not have a job outside of school, she does occasionally babysit. ¨A part of me wants the kids I babysit to look up to me when they’re my age. Hopefully, I’ll have some good advice to give them when I’m 26,¨ Rachel said. Her biggest challenge she encountered during her high school years would have to be not being more involved around school. ¨I regret not trying harder to have a higher class rank, not playing a sport, not doing band, yearbook, more clubs, etc,” Rachel said. “I used to struggle with feeling like I was missing out on my high school experience.” However, her biggest accomplishment was held through her theater class. “I am most proud of the time I was getting the lead in our One Act sophomore year and seeing where the entire cast went with it,” Rachel said. Her best friends are Olivia Arp, Faith Jones, Courtlyn Brown, Fatima Godoy, and Hylyn Lumpkins. “They are genuinely the most awesome girls you can be friends with,” she said. “Our

conversations can go from academics to therapy to story times to tiktok references; they’ve all been there for me for years, and I love them beyond words for it. I also have been so lucky to have been friends with Brooklyn Hall for the last four years; she and I can talk for 7 hours straight and it feels like 20 minutes, no exaggeration here.” What she fears the most about graduating is losing connections with people she has grown to love during high school. “There are some friends I have that I know I will be friends with for years to come; but, there are other relationships that don’t run as deep that while I love, I don’t know that I’ll talk to or see them again after we leave KHS,” Rachel said. “My biggest fear is just losing the people in my life that I care about, but I don’t have a deep enough connection to keep around.” The quotes she lives by would have to be, “Be a little kinder than you have to.” - E. Lockhart. “It’s so important to be kinder than necessary because I’ve noticed that when I’m having a harder day than usual, a compliment or unusual kindness can genuinely turn my day around,” Rachel said.

~Carmen Vazquez

Rachel Bowman

December Employee of the Month

Candice Fouse

The December Employee of the Month is English teacher Candice Fouse. She believes she was selected because of the relationships she has created here at KHS. “I believe I was chosen because I try my hardest to create a good relationship with my students and with the staff here at KHS,” Fouse said. “I hope that someone took notice of that and wanted to say ‘thank you’ in a way.” She graduated from East Texas Baptist University with a degree in secondary education specializing in English and a minor in psychology. This minor in psychology has influenced her classroom in an interesting way. “I think my biggest challenge in being a teacher, but not necessarily only tied to KHS, has been to reach and connect with students who have suffered trauma and therefore act out in certain ways that are not appropriate,” Fouse said. A trauma-informed classroom is important to Mrs. Fouse because she worried for her students that suffer from trauma in a number of ways. She believes that by her being informed of her students’ hard times helps her be able to reach her students. “Students who do not trust you, do not learn from you,” Fouse said. “So, overall, I think that putting my own selfishness aside and reaching students on a level that they need me

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to be on has been my biggest, but also my most rewarding, challenge to date.” While making an impact in her classroom, she hopes to make school something her students look forward to; especially her classroom. “Having previous students return to my classroom, even after being out of school for months due to a pandemic, makes my heart so happy,” Fouse said. “Any time that I hear a current student say ‘this is my favorite class,’ whether that is due to the environment, the subject, or me specifically, I am proud to know that I have that special place in someone’s day.” Outside of her immediate classroom, Mrs. Fouse is the co-sponsor of FCS. “I like being involved in this activity because it is refreshing to see students who strive to be better spiritually meeting together to pray, encourage, and lead,” Fouse said. “I founded Fellowship of Christian Students at the high school that I attended so it also serves as a fun reminder of that time as well.” Outside of school, she is a mother to two young children which is one of her biggest accomplishments. “I would definitely say my two babies are the biggest accomplishments in my life,” Fouse said. “I had our daughter when I was in my early 20s and our son a couple years later. They are sweet, caring,

and fun kids that love me and their dad.” In her everyday life, a quote that guides Mrs. Fouse is one by Sherlock Holmes that says “To great minds, nothing is little.” To her, despite Holmes ‘oddball’ tendencies he knew what he was talking about. “To me, this quote reminds me that even the little things matter,” Fouse said. “For instance, I try to live my life in a compassionate and understanding way. To some, this might seem small, but to the one person who needs compassion in a world that is heavy on judgement, that one act might mean the world.” She also tries to live this quote out in her education career by considering every small thing. “Also, in the teaching profession, your day is made up of small, routine tasks that in the end, mean a lot,” Fouse said. “Everything adds up in time, so really, nothing is ‘little’.” While Mrs. Fouse cannot guarantee where she sees herself in 10 years, she knows it will be unknown and spontaneous. “I hope I’m still making a difference in people’s lives and being able to teach,” Fouse said. “I know for sure that I’ll be at my own kids’ middle school games and cheering them on from the sidelines.”

~ Olivia Arp


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10 Features

December 11, 2020

Making History FFA LDE Students Go To State Cerenity Exline Staff Writer

Resolution ready • Sophomore Olivia Bludell reviews Model UN rules and regulations before her upcoming event. Photo by Rachel Niemeyer.

Model United Nations goes virtual Rachel Niemeyer Staff Writer Students from all grades are currently preparing for the first-ever virtual Model United Nations (MUN) experience. On Jan. 28 and 29, the traditional MUN sessions will be held via Zoom conference. Several are bearing mixed emotions towards this transition, as they are long-time participants who are hesitant to see their beloved event change. “I chose to participate in Model UN this year because I always have a blast doing it,” senior Hylyn Lumpkins said. “The past 4 years I have participated, it has always been worth all of my hard work. Last year and the year before my country was able to walk away with an award in some of the separate contests. This year, I’m hoping to be able to do the same.” MUN is a very interactive event, and this is new territory for everyone, including the sponsors and teachers, but especially the participants. Adapting to new COVID-19 regulations will be interesting to say the least. “Holding Model UN virtually will certainly be a huge change from what it normally is,” Lumpkins said. “I’m disappointed I won’t physically be able to go to Region 7 and participate, but maybe this change will allow for me to be bolder when participating.” Several students are eager to see

how the current changes in the world will affect the event. The pandemic itself, and issues like police brutality and racial injustice are sure to be prevalent topics this year. “I think it will be really important to discuss our current world issues at this year’s event, rather than choosing to ignore them,” sophomore Delaney Moses said. “I believe our Model UN will definitely be more significant this year, and I’m very excited to hear everyone’s input.” Many delegates are hesitant to participate virtually. Most upperclassmen doing Model UN this year are “veterans” so to say, and are a tad unsure to change the MUN they have grown so accustomed to. “I feel really uncertain,” senior Rachel Bowman said. “I had assumed that Model UN would be a breeze this year, as I’ve done it technically three years. I assumed that by senior year, my friends and I would know the ropes and be very successful. However, with the virtual competition adding a new element, we don’t know the competition as well and that throws off my certainty that we would do as well.” Several students have become more eager to participate, especially this year. The issues that have recently met the world are on many students’ minds. “I normally participate in Model UN every year, but it is important to me now more than ever to be involved,” sophomore Bethany

McWilliams said. “With all the events that have happened over the course of 2020, I feel more inclined to reach out and find solutions for the problems we are struggling to solve.” Once again, some Model United Nations pros are a bit nervous to take part in this brand new thing that is so foreign to everyone including the MUN sponsor, Carl Mohn. Students have great concerns, but are still doing what they can to remain hopeful. “I would say I have some mixed emotions about Model UN being virtual this year,” senior Cerenity Exline said. “It will definitely be different this year with having the entire event virtual, and I am not sure completely how I feel about it, but I know it will be great. I think the best part of Model UN is the actual debate which we normally do face to face and by raising placards, which I am not sure exactly what adjustments and changes will have to be made this year, but I know will make it work.” This Model UN will certainly be one for the history books. Many participating students possess very strong opinions on very polarizing topics the world is seeing right now, so there is sure to be one of MUN’s notorious, heated debates. “I think that Model UN will definitely be more significant than ever this year because of the state of the world,” sophomore Sam Clements said. “The event will not only allow students to share their opinions, but also share their ideas as to how to fix global situations.”

Upcoming MUN Dates: * Participants in MUN leadership lead on Jan. 11 & 12 * MUN competition takes place on Jan. 28 & 29

Kilgore FFA students competed in the Leadership Development Events, or LDE on Dec. 1. The LDE competition focuses on creating situations for the FFA members to demonstrate their abilities in different areas including public speaking, communication, decision making, and their knowledge of agriculture and the FFA organization. The competition helps students develop skills they will need in seeking employment in the agriculture industry. Competing in the Agriculture Advocacy event were junior Riley Rios and seniors Makayla Rawls and Ruston Hendrickson. “I chose this event last year because it seemed challenging,” senior Ruston Hendrickson said. The Agriculture Advocacy team made history going on to compete at the state level. The team had competed at the district and area levels, and advanced to the state level. “We first competed at our district competition and placed second behind Henderson,” Hendrickson said. “Then we competed at Area and placed second again, beating Henderson.” Thinking about previous years, this is the first year for students from Kilgore to go to the state LDE competition that anyone can think of. “I have asked teachers and past students, and they cannot remember

the last time Kilgore went to state,” he said. Hendrickson began getting heavily involved in FFA his freshman year of high school, and better in the program has really affected him outside of school. “Personally, it has made me a better person and taught me countless life lessons,” he said. The team worked hard together in preparation for the competition. “My team and I held a lot of practices and spent time brainstorming about what we wanted to advocate about and how to present our information,” Hendrickson said. As with most activities this year, the state LDE competition was held virtually. “We basically had a zoom meeting and presented there,” Hendrickson said. “We had to set up cameras and our props inside a room and then used zoom.” Overall, the team placed in the top 24 in the state.

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1. Awaiting Results • Senior Ruston Hendrickson awaits the results from the judge while showing his beefmaster at the Harvest Festival Livestock Show. Courtesy photo. 2. All Smiles • Senior Makayla Rawls shows off her lamb before the competition begins. Courtesy photo. 3. Competition Time • Junior Riley Rios sets up her lamb for chest view at the Kilgore Project Show. Courtesy Photo. 4. Finally Done • Seniors Ruston Hendrickson and Makayla Rawls, and junior Riley Rios take photo after completing their LDE State competition. Courtesy photo. 5. Proud Sponsor • FFA sponsor Macie Wagstaff is photographed with the State Agriculture Advocacy team who competed. Courtesy photo.

Senior earns first place in Region 7 2020 Photography Contest Faith Jones Managing Editor Senior Courtlyn Brown won first place, as well as honorable mention in the Give It Your Best Shot Student Photography Contest hosted by Region 7. Students across the region were encouraged to participate in the Region 7 Education Service Center 2020 Photography Contest. Courtlyn has been pursuing photography since her freshman year in journalism class, following which she chose to be a part of the Reflector Yearbook Staff. She mostly takes pictures at sporting events. Courtlyn has been taking photos at football games since her junior year when she first photographed a football game. “I love doing all sports, but football would have to be my favorite sport,” Courtlyn said. “I think that is due to the fact there is not just the football at the game but the band, cheerleaders, Bulldog crew, and Hi-Steppers as well.” This contest was Courtlyn’s first time entering her photos in a competition. There is another contest coming up in the spring that she plans on participating in as well. Photography has been one thing that she has consistently pursued throughout high school. I think that my favorite thing about

photography is getting to see the end result,” Courtlyn said. “I also love the thought that I have captured so many people’s high school memories while doing something I love.” Recently, Courtlyn has started practicing photography outside of school. She has done several photo shoots, which she highlights on her work. She photographs couples, seniors, and portrait photo shoots. She features these images through social media. The Instagram account is @ courtlynmaephotography. These are things that she plans to expand and continue doing in the future. “I take pictures on my own time along with the pictures I take for the yearbook,” Courtlyn said. “I do plan to pursue photography in the future as a hobby and also as a source of income while going to college to become a dental hygienist.” The contest did not have a limit on how many entries one student had. Courtlyn entered four photos, of which two gained recognition; one earned first place and the second honorable mention. “I think that the coolest thing about the contest is that there were over 75 entries from students all over our region and I got first,” Courtlyn said. Journalism teacher and sponsor for both the Reflector and Mirror staffs, Amy Bates encouraged all of her students to participate in the contest. “I entered the competition to get feedback on my photography, but to also see how other student

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1 1. Photograpy Queen • Senior Courtlyn Brown lays out surrounded by her favorite things. Self-portrait by Brown. 2. First Place Photo • Brown’s first place football photograph that she entered in the Region VII Photo Contest. Photo by Courtlyn Brown. 3. Award Recipient • Brown poses with her camera, ready to capture moments and conquer the photography world. Courtesy Photo. be involved in school, and that The photographers were doing this year,” Courtlyn said. “And, also because Mrs. Bates wanted me to.” Yearbook has been Courtlyn’s favorite class the three years she has been involved. Even when she was little she knew that she wanted to

Reflector was one way she planned on participating. Courtlyn is Co-Editor in Chief on the yearbook staff. “When you can’t find me, I’m in Mrs. Bates’s room 124,” Courtlyn said. “Her room is practically my second home.”

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Photo Feature

Students in Jay Dean’s Forensic Science classes participated this week in The Tire Track Challenge. The students are identifying vehicles that create certain tracks. Photos courtesy of Coach Dean.

Carter Williams, Hailey Espinoza & Shawn Roland

Damion Sickler, Chelsea Pierson, & Mariana Martinez

Jada Franklin & Gavin Garrett Cade Pippen, Luis Campos, Cindy Contreras & Grant Reeves

Jacari Banks, Alan Avalos, Ronda Traywick, & Hunter Pipak


Christmas Contest

December 11, 2020

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ugly sweater madness Sophomore Drake Williams is decked out in his homemade sweater.

Freshman Moira Basham throws some shade in her Santa sweater.

Senior Brooklyn Hall displays her festive sweater covered in tinsel. Sophomore Addi Wood wears a traditional sweater.

Freshman Allison Williams is in her Stressed, Blessed, Christmas Obsessed sweater.

DAEP Receptionist Annette Wiley models her cheetah print Christmas Elf dress. Freshman Andrea Torres looks happy in her Feliz Navidad sweater.

Media teacher Maci Bowne made her own fabulous snowman sweater.

Senior Haylee Brown models her Christmas Jumper.

Media teacher Logan Ward is jolly in his Elf sweater.

Senior Victoria McFadden is warm in her fireside sweater.

Freshman Kai Tucker goes all out in his Christmas tree hoodie.

Junior Trystan Puckett is ready to cruise to the North Pole with her Santa hot rod sweater. Photos by Reflector Staff Members. Not all Ugly Christmas sweaters are pictured.


12 Sports

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December 11, 2020

A Football Season to remember...and one we needed Ryan Cartwright Staff Writer Bulldogs, what a season! In a semester where we didn’t know if we would have any events...you gave us your all. Thank you for our Friday nights. The spirit. The fans. The performances. We loved it all. And, you outlived the predictions of many. All good things come to an end, and unfortunately football season came to an end for the Dogs on Friday, Dec. 4 in Nacogdoches at SFASU. Reviewing the season, in the first round against Splendora, the Bulldogs played at home and won 42-0. On Nov. 20, the Bulldogs traveled to Houston to beat El Campo 24-17. In the 3rd round in Jasper, the Dogs got through a close game against the Hargrave Falcons by a score of 20-17. “Lindale was the toughest for our team,” senior Brian Brown said. Fourth round for the dogs was a ‘district championship rematch’ against the Lindale Eagles. The Dogs went into halftime with the lead, and ended up losing to the eagles 42-56. This was a much closer game than the score showed. The boys fought until the end, but unfortunately time ran out in the

game. “The competition gets better each week, and we play well or go home,” Head Coach Mike Wood said. Quarterback Dalton McElyea threw for 5 touchdown passes in the game, 2 to Donovan Adkins, and 1 each to Brian Brown, Jermaine Roney and Cade Pippen. Running back Tray Epps also had a rushing touchdown for the Dogs. He would have had two, but one was called back due to a holding penalty. The Bulldogs rallied in the 2nd quarter to take a 21-20 lead but could not hold onto the lead in the second half of the game. “It’s really exciting to see how our school and community get behind our football team,” Offensive Coordinator Jay Dean said. “Honestly, I feel like we had a great year. With everything that has gone on in 2020 to get to the State Quarterfinals is an awesome achievement. I told some of our players a few weeks ago that good teams play on Thanksgiving and really good teams play in December.” It was a back and forth game until the 3rd quarter when it went bad for the dogs and Lindale took over. Unfortunately for the Bulldogs they could never catch up to the Eagles in the fourth quarter. Sadly time ran out and the final whistle blew. “I think, more than anything, is

the fact that we had different guys “step up” each week…I think that our seniors did a great job of leading throughout the play-offs. You could tell it was a special time for them,” Dean said. “I am extremely proud of these young men…there has been so much uncertainty this year, however, they never lost their faith and belief in what we were asking them to do as a football team. Our coaches have been working since the spring on this football season. They never lost sight of where we were going and what we could accomplish.” The Bulldogs will look to have a different team with the large group of seniors leaving. Some positions that will look different for the Dogs next year include quarterback, offensive line, wide receivers, and some of the defense. Congrats to the team on an amazing season. This one will be remembered by fans for a while. Good luck to the seniors leaving, and good luck to the team next year. Carry on with Bulldog Pride... through pandemic or whatever comes. “I would like to tell the coaches thank you for believing in me for these three years, and thank you for teaching me things I needed to know that have made me better over the years,” senior Tray Epps said.

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3 1) Passing the ball • Quarterback Dalton McElyea drops back to throw the ball. 2) Rushing the passer • Lineman Kaden Kenney gets ready to rush the passer. 3) Game Ready • The varsity team runs out onto the field ready for the game. Photos by Courtlyn Brown.

Thank you, Red Ganus & Richard Stanley Think Football season. Two people Kilgore fans are used to seeing on the sidelines are athletic trainer Red Ganus and School Resource Officer Richard Stanley. Red Ganus joined the Bulldogs in 1999. Richard Stanley joined KISD in 2002. Both of these men will be leaving KHS in December, moving on to start new ventures. For their service to our community, we say thank you. The memories and friendships made will carry on. You are both true Bulldogs, and our sidelines will never be quite the same. Thank you. You will be missed.

Courtney, Carley, & Red Ganus are pictured in their first Bulldog coaching picture.

Coach Red Ganus is pictured with the young men that help keep KHS athletes healthy, the athletic trainers.

Students visit with Officer Stanley in the KHS Library while he makes his rounds.

Post race • The varsity cross country team huddles together after running at the state meet. Photo courtesy of April Cox.

Cross Country places fifth in state Payton Berger Sports Editor The boys cross country team finished their season at the State meet on Nov. 24. The team placed fifth in

the state overall, which is an amazing accomplishment. The team members who participated in the state meet are Ab Herrera, Austin Bain, Christopher

May, Yamir Sanchez, Max Torres, Zachery Gutierrez, and Josue Rosas. It has been 30 years since the entire boys team has gone to state, so this year was monumental.

La’Tamera Fry and Red Ganus, athletic trainers and friends.

Officer Richard Stanley

Tis the season to watch Bulldog Basketball Girls Roster Varsity Alexis “T” Anderson • Miah Thomas • Keke Roy • Emily Hampton Skylar Howell • Skye Cotton • Summer Hayden-Epps Jazmine Vasquez • Bryonne Brooks • Catherine Dennis Brooklynn Wilkerson

JV Khloe Davis • Jada Dennis • Leyly Escobedo • Ny’Kayla Hooper Kristen Kennel • Najala Mccollister • Leanna Morin

Cerenity Exline Staff Writer

Boys Roster

With the basketball seasons just beginning, the teams have high hopes for the year. Still in pre-district games and scrimmages, the boys varsity team is 5-2 overall, and the girls varsity team is 1-3. District games for the boys’ teams will begin on Dec. 29 in Lindale. The girls start district play on Tuesday hosting Cumberland at 5 p.m. The boys are coached by head coach, Jeff Coleman, assisted by T.J. Gillen-Hall and Braden Robey. The girls are coached by Trushundra McGill, assisted by Ashia Kelly and Adan Carrasco. Boys play: Girls play Friday at home. Varsity starts at 6:30 and JV 5 & they play in Gilmer Saturday at 11 a.m. The boys play Saturday at home. They host Center. Games start with freshman @12 noon, JV@ 1 p.m. and Varsity at 2:15 p.m.

Varsity

Thomas Hattaway • Bryson Parker •Isaac Hoberecht Javoria Easley • Jonathon Ross • C.J. Ingram • Ethan Drury Jake Thompson • Daverion Franklin • Corey Rider William Jones • Thomas Donham • Davin Rider • Jordan McGee

JV Dadrian Franklin • Mattew Tyeskie • Matthew Riley

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Alex Desantiago • Rylan Copeland • Jason Silvey • Bobby King Demontrell Candie • Peyton Christian • Kaylon Jackson

D’shailynn Lacy • Jasmin Baldazo Martinez

Ro’nyn Williams • Domenic Rosas • Domenic Porter • Alex Nabor • Isaiah Ross

Freshman

Freshman

Abigail Barrios • Jaziaya Brooks • Kaydence Brown • Keishly Cruz

Zaylon Stoker • Taylor Oliver • Mikel Dennis • Jayden Pyle

Jada Graham • Rickiera Guinn • Savannah Hayden

Brayden Nelson • PJ Wiley • Zander Short • Carlos Avalos

Salynda Mills • Karleigh Murphy • Maggie Quine • Makayla Smith

Caleb Logston • Cutter Gaudet • Braquan Moye

Jayden Turner • Taliah Vinson

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1) Going for the block • Junior C.J. Ingram prevents other team from scoring. 2) Taking the shot • Bryson Parker goes up to shoot while Jake Thompson and Isaac Hoberecht prepare to rebound the shot. Javoria Easley and CJ Ingram stay back to prepare for a fastbreak. 3) Defense • Thomas Hattaway pins the point guard right. Photos by Trent Lopez.

Jordan Pierce • Shivraz Sohal • Eli Talley

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Kilgore High School Mirror December 11, 2020  

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