A crowning moment

Dong named homecoming queen

Surprised+to+be+named+homecoming+queen%2C+senior+Chau+Dong+stands+on+the+field+with+her+parents+Friday+at+Grim+Stadium.

Photo by Sydney Steed

Surprised to be named homecoming queen, senior Chau Dong stands on the field with her parents Friday at Grim Stadium.

Story by Taylor Potter, co-editor in chief

The arrival.

The girls group up on the sidelines. Chitchatting with the others on court. Wishing each other luck. Hugs. Compliments. Awkward parents. It’s all there.

                        ***

The Preparation.

Drill team lines up. Cheer takes the field. Color guard takes that formation. Nerves peak.

They grasp their escorts tighter. The voices of junior Gage Martin and senior Braden May echo across the stadium. Leadership adviser Susan Waldrep gives them last second instructions.

And they take the field.

                        ***

The pause.

The line of girls stretches across the fields. They flash their nervous smiles at the crowd. Chat idly with their starstruck parents. Watch the crown glint and sparkle in the mascot’s paws.

The silence feels long. Heavy. Like it will drag on forever. But slowly, the PA begins to pick back up. The announcement begins.

***

Senior Chau Dong, along with her parents, reacts to being named homecoming queen Friday at Grim Stadium.
Senior Chau Dong, along with her parents, reacts to being named homecoming queen Friday at Grim Stadium.

Before the game against Natchitoches Central, senior Chau Dong was announced as the 2013 Homecoming Queen. Seniors Marissa Johnston and Jacoya Matlock were named as the Maids of Honor.

To Dong, the crowning came as a shock, as she doesn’t fit the mold for your typical high school homecoming queen.

“I’m weird, and I’m a nerd,” Dong said. “I’m not like the stereotypical popular girl. I’m just weird, and I don’t know how I got this.”

Even though she is known for stealing the spotlight at football games with her school spirit, Dong was in danger of causing a much different spectacle after the announcement.

“I was about faint,” Dong said. “I was hunching over. I just grabbed my parents, and my dad didn’t realize it. I don’t think my mom realized it until moments later.”

Matlock felt a similar feeling when she was recognized as one of the Maids of Honor.

“I wasn’t really expecting it, but I’m glad it happened,”  Matlock said. “I feel like anyone could have gotten anything because they’re all sweet girls.”

Her Maid of Honor counterpart, Johnston, was also overjoyed with her selection, but is glad that this hectic week is over.

“It’s been so weird getting the dress and the outfit for the field,” Johnston said. “It’s always been cramming, but this was just weird.”

Regardless of the outcome, the girls feel as if they represented a good variety of the student body and enjoyed the experience.
“I love all of them,” Dong said. “I love how we have a diverse group of girls. Anyone of them would be deserving of the crown.”