Herald Editorial: We are Family
“We are Family” is a slogan that the K-State football team adopted several years back. I have never looked into why this was used by the squad, but I assume that it was adopted in reference to the mutual feeling between the team and the fan base.
I hope that this does not offend anyone but I believe that “We are Family” should instead be used to describe the community of Sabetha. I witnessed this kind of atmosphere last Saturday. Before I explain, I must state that there are many reasons that I have chosen to spend my life in the town where I was raised. If you have chosen to put down roots here as well then you know the reasons for living here so I don’t need to take an entire page and list them.
I have been to some pretty neat places in the country and abroad, but Sabetha is and always will be home. There is not another place like it in the world!
Last Saturday, the Sabetha Bluejay football squad participated in the Class 3A State Football Championship game against the Marysville Bulldogs in Hutchinson. It had been 20 years since the Jays had last played in a title game. The Sabetha “family” showed up in force to show their support. I had the privilege of standing on the sideline manning a camera. As I looked up toward the stands, I was amazed at the number of people who made the long journey to cheer on the squad. I heard someone ask if there was anyone left in Sabetha. The Jays prevailed 7-6 in a game that went right down to the final seconds before the victory was secured.
It had been a long time since I had been to a high school game that had that much drama and excitement. As the players celebrated among each other, I noticed several athletes with tears of joy streaming down their faces. It had been a very emotional experience. As the parents and fans poured onto the field after the trophy presentation the tears of joy continued to flow. It truly was a “family experience.”
After a very long and well deserved celebration, the crowd began to disperse and head back to Sabetha. My son-in-law and I headed for home. I had been home for no more than half an hour before my cell phone began to light up.
On the trip home, part of our “family” had been involved in a tragic accident. I cried out to God in hopes that there had been a mistake. Several hours later it had been confirmed that Sabetha had lost three members of its family and a fourth had been seriously injured. The news was devastating. The tears of joy earlier in the day now turned to tears of anguish and grief.
Once again, I cried out to God asking why this had happened. Our community is now needed to show their love and support in a different manner. Within a very short time, our “family” was already throwing their arms around the families affected by this tragedy. I am not surprised. This is what Sabetha does. We are indeed a “family” and when one of our own is hurting, we all are hurting. I know that there have been a lot of tears for the families and there will be many more to come. We as a community cannot take this pain away from our loved ones, but we can be there for the families to lean on and be there when they need us. This hurt will not pass quickly. We can never be the same with this loss of our loved ones. It is impossible. But we can grieve with them, cry with them and most importantly be available to them. This is what family does. That is what Sabetha does. That is because “We are Family.”
To those who are suffering right now, please know that we are here for you.