Categorized | News, Sports

Lady Rebels Go Gold for Lauren Moody

By Thomas Sellers Jr.

Volleyball block at net Volleyball kill at net

During the Go Gold game against Munford, TRA's Rachel Woelm subs in for teammate Havana Silva.

During the Go Gold game against Munford, TRA’s Rachel Woelm subs in for teammate Havana Silva.

The traditional school colors for Tipton-Rosemark Academy are red, white and blue.
But for one night, the school adopted new colors in honor of student Lauren Moody for fighting Osteosarcoma. A member of the TRA Lady Rebel Volleyball team, Moody was diagnosed in May with the form of cancer.
Now receiving treatments at the Campbell Clinic and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Moody has been supporting her teammates from a distance. On Sept. 28, the sophomore’s peers had a chance to raise recognition for her battle and pay tribute to Moody with a three-set win over Munford.
TRA closed out the visiting Lady Cougars 25-8 in the final set. After the victory, some of the visitors to the TRA Gymnasium asked the winning players why the unique uniforms.
“It’s for Gold Out Night,” TRA Volleyball player Rachel Woelm noted. “One of our teammates got cancer and she wasn’t able to play this year. Gold is the color that represents childhood cancer. And purple is the color the type of cancer she has.”
With October being Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, Woelm said wearing the special jerseys and playing an area rival motivated the Lady Rebels. The Lady Rebels controlled the tempo the entire night behind contributes from Woelm, Haley Ramsey, Havana Silva, Joze Smith, Sydney Pilkington, Kallie Alexander and more.
“We’ve worked really hard this year just to improve and show Lauren we’re your team still,” Woelm said. “And we’re ready for her to come back.”
Woelm had to make a comeback of her own. In January Woelm and her sister Sarah were hit head-on while driving.
“I almost lost my leg,” Rachel recalled. “The car wreck was very severe. My sister broke her femur and shattered both her ankles. They didn’t think she would be able to walk comfortably again. And they thought they were going to have to take my leg.”
Rachel had swelling in her legs and for a moment faced amputation. But all her injuries started to heal. Woelm rehabilitated her leg and now is back into form on the court. Against Munford, Woelm scored several points with her jump serve. Following her in the rotation was Ramsey. She had the Lady Cougars confused throughout the night with her serving.  The serves of Lady Rebels went a long way toward making Gold Out Night a full success. Those inquiring about the Gold Out learned about Moody’s battle and the disease.
Doctors found that Moody  had a sarcoma tumor in her left calf attached to her fibula bone. She had surgery to biopsy the tumor and her lung. The family learned that she is dealing with osteosarcoma, an aggressive type of bone cancer. The diagnoses came early and it had not spread.
Shortly after the finding, Moody began the first of 18 chemotherapy treatments. The 15-year-old has a lone journey ahead of her with chemo and surgeries.
From Moody to Woelm, the 2015 Lady Rebels know about fighting. And Woelm said another Gold Standard around Rosemark these days is not to take anything for granted.
“It’s an awesome feeling to be out here with my team again,” she concluded. “I didn’t think it was going to be possible at the very beginning of the year. It’s just a God-given thing. We don’t take it for granted at all.”

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