By Brian Livingston / firstname.lastname@example.org
The Meridian Star
Lavender was the favorite color of former West Lauderdale Elementary School gifted student teacher Elaine Sorrels, who recently lost her battle with cancer.
If she were at Okatibbee Dam Road Friday — and some of those present thought she was — she would have loved seeing the staff and teachers dressed in lavender T-shirts taking part in a 5K/10K run and walk to benefit Relay for Life that was dedicated in memory of Sorrels.
All of the school's 93 staff members participated in some way and more than a few shed tears when West Lauderdale Elementary School Principal Rosemary Harris spoke of Sorrels.
"It was the first of April of this year when Elaine passed away," Harris said. "We are here for her as well as the cancer survivors who are part of the West Lauderdale Elementary family."
On a bright and beautiful spring day, scores of WLE staff and administrators gathered to raise money for Relay for Life. But the event, which Harris hopes will be an annual event, took on even more meaning for the staff.
"This is also part of our professional development team program and an attempt for us to also enjoy some exercise," Harris said.
Lisa Shelly, assistant principal at the school, said $2,200 had already been raised for Relay for Life.
"There was a $20 entry fee where half went to Relay for Life and the other half went to purchasing the T-shirts for Elaine," Shelly said.