As many of you know, on August 3, 2015, a beloved HCS 8th grade student, David Talsma, was killed in a tragic car accident. Since that time, we have sought wisdom and help through prayer and from experts in the grieving process to guide us along the way. We continue to be blessed by the support and advice given.
Friday, December 4 was a very special day for the 8th grade students and staff. During the last period of the day the 8th grade class, staff, members of David Talsma’s immediate family, and artist Mark Landacre, who created the artwork on the memorial stone, gathered to dedicate the stone created to remember and celebrate David’s life.
We spent time in God’s Word, reflection, meditation, and prayer thanking God for David’s life and the impact he had on so many. We took comfort in the knowledge that he is now living with his Eternal Father and the assurance of the gift of eternal life offered to each one of us.
At the end of the dedication, the 8th grade students were given the opportunity to write a message on the bottom of the river rocks that they had created to be a visual reminder of the focus of our Spiritual Emphasis Week in October – Living Beyond Myself. Then they placed their rocks along both sides of the path that travels from David’s memorial stone. Allowing each student to place their stone was an important step for each individual student to continue to process his and her grief and feelings. It also symbolized a number of important things:
- The stones are a reminder to live beyond ourselves like David did and how God expects His children to live this way.
- The stones are all different from each other celebrating that each one of us has been created unique and special and the dot on each stone acknowledges that each one of us is an important individual making up the 8th grade community, HCS community and community of God’s kingdom.
- The gold river/band connecting from one stone to another is a reminder of our connection with David, with each other, and with our Rock – Jesus Christ.
Our time together as classmates, teachers, and family of David was incredibly special and truly a blessing. We covet your prayers as we continue to shepherd our students in this journey of life, love and loss. Thank you for your support and partnership.
Anchored in The Rock,
Mary Broene, Middle School Principal