A very Happy New Year to all of our Ginn Academy supporters! We thought that you might like to get to know a few of the GA students, faculty, and staff through some of their favorite holiday memories. We're trying to prolong the holiday cheer for as long as we can!
Justin, GA's senior class president, clearly remembers when his mother got him an XBox when he was 11.
Brandon, another senior, used to sneak around and peek at his presents before Christmas, but soon learned that he was robbing himself of Christmas morning fun and has since reformed his behavior. He now loves just spending time with his friends and family.
Jaylond, a freshman (below, right), enjoyed his holiday a year ago when he got new bedroom furniture and his room was painted blue.
And Adekunle, another freshman (above, on left), likes to wake up to snow on the ground and a big Christmas dinner that he eats with his family. He pictures no arguing, listening to music, and seeing smiles on everyone's faces.
Justin, a junior, got a dog a few years ago, a Yorkie that he named Crunchy.
One of our Youth Support staff, Bryon Ottrix, lights up like a Christmas tree when he recalls his son, now in 4th grade, running into his house on the morning of December 25th when he was 3 or 4, yelling, "Y'all got Christmas over here??!"
A dirt bike from his mom led to Herbert, a junior, getting so excited one year that he fell down the stairs. He's since given it to his little cousin.
In 2008, Zach's little sister came home from the hospital after suffering from pneumonia, just in time to open presents on Christmas morning. Zach is now in 11th grade.
Another junior, Antwan, got his first XBox in 6th grade and still remembers that as one of his best Christmases.
Mrs. Duncan, our school's chief secretary, is thankful that she learned when her son was little that Christmas, to her, is all year long. There's no need to spend a lot of money. Other things are much more important.
Coach Albert, one of GA's security guards, still counts seeing his first child opening presents as one of his favorite memories.
Ginn Academy 12th-grade English teacher, Mrs. Beard-Little, recalls the year when she was 8 years old that she and her brother woke up to find a real live chemistry set. And in that same year they also received a Lionel train set with smoke that came out of the engine.
Raphael's favorite memory was when his father, who is in the military, came home for Christmas four years ago and surprised him. As you can see from Raphael's tie, he's a senior this year.
Another senior, James, has a sad memory that has permeated his holidays. His grandfather, who was like a father to him, passed away in 2003.
Below we have three sophomores with Coach Ginn. On the left is Carltez who enjoyed his nephew's first Christmas last year. Darryl, second from left, still remembers his first bike, a white and brown Mongoose that he received from his mother when he was 11. And on the far right, Ralphael says that seeing the joy of his little brother's first Christmas five years ago is his favorite Christmas memory.
Coach Ginn always has a memory from his life with his grandmother in Mississippi. Christmas makes him think of the box of apples. Every year, they had to find the box of apples. "I could smell those apples, but I could never find them!" he remembers, laughing. In addition to the apples, there was also a big peppermint stick that he says was too big for his mouth.
Mr. Williams, another part of GA's Youth Support staff, was amazed one Christmas when he woke up and found that everything had been put together already by his parents. "There was nothing still in the box. A bike, a racetrack -- ready to go!" he says.
Last but certainly never least, Mrs. Flewelon, GA's technology teacher, remembers the smells of Christmas. Raised by her grandmother, Mrs. Flew learned how to prepare the big holiday meal and is still asked by her grandmother's children how to cook certain things "the way mama did it."
We thank you, as always for your support of our school, and wish you good health and happiness in 2012 from The Ginn Academy.