By Thomas Sellers Jr.
How do you identify courage?
Does courage have a certain color? Maybe it’s gold, purple or orange.
Does courage have role models? I’m sure growing with great examples of athleticism, intelligence and hard work with brothers like JT and Matt helps develop that trait.
Or does courage have a face? Lauren Moody certainly will be a beautiful, graceful image for the word.
But we all know courage has a time limit. On Dec. 30, Joey and Dana Moody’s baby girl passed away. For months she took on a courageous battle against cancer inspiring her family, a school and several communities.
Lauren, 15, impacted many people in her short time on this earth. She packed a lot of life in those 15 years. Lauren was a member of the Munford Church of Christ and played both varsity volleyball and basketball at Tipton-Rosemark Academy where she was in the 10th grade.
She was continuing the strong sports tradition of the Moody family at TRA. JT and Matt are the all-time leading scorers in Rebel Basketball history and both went on to play college ball.
Quietly by their sides supporting them through the years was their baby sister. Like most children she could play around the stands during games. But as she got older, she would take time to focus on moves and skills of her brothers. Then it was finally her turn to play varsity ball in the red, white and blue. And we were all treated to flashes of her potential.
She would battle in the paint like Matt for rebounds. Then Lauren would go for a steal on defense looking to create offense like JT.
When you play sports at Rosemark, your family will extend. Lauren’s family grew with the volleyball and basketball programs.
Since the school year began, her extended family at TRA kept Lauren in their prayers, on their hearts and in their thoughts. Gold and purple were the colors of choice in October symbolizing childhood cancer awareness and the disease Lauren fought.
Doctors found that Lauren 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. Aware of what she was facing, the scripture of Hebrews 12: 1-2 kept Lauren’s faith strong.
“1. Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2. fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Lauren was a living example of this scripture. She displayed her faith and perseverance to those who loved her over recent months.
Many witnessed her strength, love for God, belief in Christ and ability to be a role model like those who inspired her over the years.
JT and Matt have their names on a banner in the TRA Gymnasium recognizing their accomplishments on the hardwood. But the Moody who had the greatest impact on TRA, basketball, volleyball, administrators, teachers, faculty, staff and alumni was Lauren.
She can rest now, as her legacy of courage lives on.
She is survived by her parents, Joey and Dana Moody of Atoka; two brothers, J. T. Moody and Matt Moody, both of Atoka; her grandparents, Bobby and Linda Moody of Atoka, Kenny and Glenda Kight of Drummonds and Danny and Alice Partlow of Drummonds and her great grandmother, Margaret Partlow of Drummonds. The family request that donations be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Friends may sign an online guestbook at www.covingtonfuneralhome.com.