Five years ago, I had no idea what that name would mean to me.
I’ve been involved in my sports my entire life. The #25 was always on my back, all the way up until my graduation from high school.
That all changed with one text message from someone who has become a close friend, mentor and one of my biggest supporters.
Allie Ware graduated from Richmond in 2014, she was an integral part of my decision to become a Spider. She also grew up in Milton, Georgia, a mere 25-minute drive from my hometown of Johns Creek. She had worn the #22 her entire career at Richmond and she was now asking me to do the same.
It wasn’t because we had become close, it had a much deeper meaning.
In 2009, Parker Jackson, Allie’s next door neighbor and long-time friend died in a car accident. Like Allie and myself, Parker was an athlete as well, his number? #22.
Shortly after his death, a lacrosse tournament was created in his honor called the Legacy Cup, a tournament that I vividly remember playing in while I was growing up. It was one of my favorite weekends because the camaraderie amongst all the teams in attendance seemed better than any other tournament I had played in.
I never had the privilege of meeting Parker. I’ve heard plenty of stories and his impact on everyone around him has truly been incredible to learn about.
Parker’s legacy isn’t just in our home state of Georgia, it’s much more than that.
I’m privileged to put on my practice jersey everyday and think about Allie and Parker and how lucky I am to put on the #22 and play for a legacy much greater than my own.