I was extremely touched by Sydney when she messaged me to say that her Mom read my blog and mentioned to her that I would like to hear stories of Michelle from other people’s perspectives. She told me she and another one of Michelle’s friends had written some memories and gathered some pictures and asked if they could share. So I’m honored to present the first guest blogger, Sydney Schenk.
A True Beacon of Hope
If I had to choose one word to describe Michelle Chalk, it would be selfless. She always put others in front of herself. As I write this I keep having to remind myself to change everything to past tense as it still doesn’t register in my mind that she will never bump into me in the hallways or eat lunch with me while talking about books. Every day when I walk into school she come to mind and I think about how she would be doing in high school. She was always a great student and an even better person, so I believe that she would be having a great experience.
A memory I will always hold dear to my heart is our shared love of a certain book series. Every day she would come in happy to share what part she read and we would have long discussions about our favorite and least favorite scenes. We always debated on how to say characters’ names and when we found out that she was right on one of them, she didn’t brag or rub it in. She handled it in true Michelle fashion and just smiled, even comforting me afterwards.
Sometimes we would meet after second period and walk together towards our third periods, and she would always make sure to say thank you to her teacher before leaving. Little things like that just made her who she was. She was always thinking of others and acting out of kindness. One day during Red Ribbon Week, there was a poster where students could leave their comments on why they would never do drug. She wrote, “My family would be devastated.” She was so selfless and cared about her family so much, and I don’t think one other person wrote anything else like that. Her brain was wired to immediately think of others and she was so unique in everything she did, and she did a lot. I remember in journalism we had a list of people who were in the yearbook too many times and she was the first person to get put on it. She was involved in everything, bringing light to so many aspects of the school.
She was a true blessing to have in my life and I want to thank her family for sharing her with all of us. No one in Fort Thomas will ever forget her, because she will forever be the angel looking after us. I see her influence everywhere I go, like High Five Friday and when people say thank you to teachers after class. She touched everyone’s life around her and we are all better people for it. I truly hope that I can accomplish living free like Michelle.
I will forever wish that I could bring her back to us, as I’m sure all of you do, but the most I can do is write this article. I hope that this brings a bit of happiness to you all and helps lift some of the weight off your heart.