Jasper High School
Jasper High School
When raw talent meets endless drive, success is sure to follow.
Ask most student athletes who inspires them, and they’ll likely name a professional or college great in the sport they play. Ask Preston Reed, and he’ll name his school custodian. Preston was in eighth grade when he first met Mr. Travis, and it was the custodian’s attitude, work ethic, love of gospel, and constant smile that drew Preston’s attention. “He has been one of the most influential people in my life over the past four years,” Preston says. So, for National Custodial Workers’ Recognition Day, Preston and a classmate decided to show Mr. Travis just how much they appreciate him. They started a GoFundMe page to raise money to purchase the janitor a new truck. A local car dealership took note and offered to match GoFundMe donations. “Not even a month after the GoFundMe had started, we were able to hand Travis the keys to his new truck. It was the most amazing experience of my life!”
That’s saying a lot, given the many accolades Preston has accumulated during his high school career. As an accomplished wrestler and football player, he’s earned much recognition and multiple awards including a state title in wrestling. Academically, he’s put himself at the head of his class and has had the honor of joining his high school’s ACT 30+ Club. These achievements haven’t always come easy. “I have been given great talents both athletically and academically, but I have also had to work to gain the top spot in both areas,” he says. As an example, after receiving a 26 on his first go at the ACT, “I vowed to get up earlier, stay up later, and join any and all ACT practice courses to try to obtain the much coveted 30.” The hard work paid off when Preston earned a 32 on his next attempt. “It was a true test of perseverance.”
In many ways, Preston’s drive comes from his parents, who have put in the effort to overcome humble beginnings and provide opportunities for Preston and his siblings. By emulating them and by making a conscious choice “to include everyone from all walks of life into my world,” Preston sets the example not only at school and in sports, but in his community. He volunteers many hours to work with children, improve his community, and mentor young athletes. And his character shines through in all his endeavors as he continually pushes himself “to be the very best I can in every single area of my life.”
“I know that you are only given one chance many times, and you better have prepared for that moment with everything in your body.”
~ Preston Reed ~