Week 33 – Ashlea & Bailea

Last week was the annual state leadership conference (SLC) for Nebraska Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA). We’re talking 2,200 Nebraska students in one place…yes, there is a little bit of energy!

I have been involved with Nebraska FBLA for years and often as an event judge at SLC. But this year, with my trip to Spain, I decided to not commit to any role. However, on Friday, April 5th I went to SLC to say hello to a few people and to just get a little dose of being among impressive young people.

I walked in with a couple of female students, one of which was on crutches. I asked the girl on crutches if she had just had knee surgery and told her that my bad knee hurt in sympathy. She said that she had just had her ACL repaired and her meniscus removed.

After this brief exchange, I entered the FBLA SLC and ran into Susan Wellman. Susan is the FBLA chapter advisor for the Syracuse, NE chapter and also serves on the board of the Nebraska FBLA Foundation. Syracuse High School students and students throughout Nebraska are fortunate to have her talents and dedication toward FBLA. I gave Susan a $50 check to the NE FBLA Foundation. More on this in my next post.

I wandered through the SLC for about 30 minutes, saying hello to a few people, checking out the exhibits and talking to a few of the student candidates for state office. As I headed to the door, who do I walk out with but the two girls that I walked in with. This had to be some sort of a sign!

I said hello and introduced myself. I asked if they were sisters and in unison they said, “twins”.  Bailea and Ashlea are juniors at Chadron High School and both tall, about 6’, like my daughter.

I gave them the usual pitch of giving50x52 and what this is about. I said that I had $50 to give and that one of them would have to be the recipient and I thought It probably should be Ashlea since she just had surgery…but as I reached in my pocket I realized I had two $50 bills, so I gave one to each of the twins.

Having knee problems myself, I felt a little connection with both of them. Ashlea had just had surgery and Bailea had previously had knee surgery (showed me the scar!)…so we all had knee issues. In spite of the injuries, they both were impressively positive.

With the $50 bills, I gave them an instruction, or suggestion, that I have not normally done as part of this journey. I asked them to spend some of the money on themselves and consider spending some of the money on someone else back in their hometown. However, at the end I also told them “no strings…do what you want”.

When I got home I was curious to learn a little more about Bailea and Ashlea. It’s not often that you can Google the first name of someone and their hometown and find them, but with Teamwork makes the dream workthese two it was quite apparent that I had run into a couple of tremendous athletes. Both play for the Chadron High School girls basketball team that went 23-4 in 2012-13. They won their district and made it to the second round at state in Class C-1. The photo with this blog post, I believe, was a quote painted on their bus as they travelled from Chadron to Lincoln for the state basketball tournament. Love the saying!

Ashlea (#31) averaged 14 points, 2.3 assists, 5.7 rebounds and about one blocked shot per game during the season. Bailea (#32) averaged 8.2 points, 1.4 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 blocked shots per game. Ashlea was selected to the World-Herald Class C-1 All-State Team and Bailea was honorable mention. These are really talented twins!

The people I have run into during this year of Giving50x52 have been fantastic, and this week was certainly no exception. Ashlea and Bailea were very friendly and quite impressive!

I’m excited to have another basketball team to follow in 2013-14, as a new fan of the Chadron High School girls basketball team! Good luck Ashlea & Bailea…and go Cardinals!

2 thoughts on “Week 33 – Ashlea & Bailea

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