Sequoyah Lights

The lights on the Sequoyah High School baseball field turned on in honor of the 2020 senior class on April 8.

Amid the COVID-19 crisis, Sequoyah High School is joining schools across the state in a unique way to honor the 2020 class.

In an effort to honor this year’s seniors which started on April 8, the lights on the school’s baseball field will be turned on at 8:20 p.m. and will stay that way for 20 minutes in an effort to honor this year’s seniors.

“For all of our Sequoyah family, many schools across Tennessee are lighting their fields for 20 minutes each night to show solidarity for the class of 2020 and to recognize the lost opportunities and memories that the class of 2020 is experiencing,” Sequoyah Athletic Director Justin Miller said in a press release.

“As a way to show our support, the Athletic Department of Sequoyah High School would like to join this movement. Beginning Wednesday, April 8, the lights on the baseball field at Sequoyah will be turned on at 8:20 and will remain on for 20 minutes as a salute to the class of 2020 and as a reminder to all Sequoyah students that the faculty and staff miss them and look forward to a return to normalcy.”

The ritual has been dubbed Project #SequoyahStrong.

On the project’s first day, Sequoyah Principal Debi Tipton, Miller and Freshman Principal Randy Echols stood on the pitcher’s mound and held inspirational posters, displayed in photos taken by student Christian Murphy and posted on the school’s Facebook page.

Different employees have taken the mound each night. On April 9, Sequoyah baseball coach Josh Monhollen and softball coach Allen Roberts honored their teams on the mound, and on Friday, track and field/cross country coach Nathan Lynn did the same.

Boys soccer coach Manuel Orozco and girls soccer coach Lindsey Liszeski were Saturday’s employees that took the mound to honor their teams.

Photos from each night, taken by Murphy, are available on the school’s Facebook page.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced closures of schools in Monroe County and the country overall. Spring sports seasons are postponed indefinitely in favor of social distancing to blunt the spread of the virus.

It is not clear when, or if, spring sports will resume.

“We ask that parents and students not come to the school and congregate,” Miller said in the release. “Remain home, quarantined and safe! The faculty and staff hopes that the students, just knowing that this simple gesture is being done for them, will feel some comfort during these difficult times.

“We also want to reassure the community that appropriate social distancing practices are being observed while carrying out this demonstration.”

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