Note: Etan Thomas attended Tulsa Washington, the same high school as Wayman Tisdale. After Tisdale died of cancer earlier this year, Thomas wrote a poem on how the former OU superstar impacted his life.
The Pride of the Great Southwest
What can I say about someone I've admired since the days I was a knee high to a grasshopper?
I remember when you came to Carver middle school and transformed into a symbol of light
You stood as a beacon
Guiding wayward ships of youth desired destinations
You directed our thoughts raising the bar of expectations
Encouraging us to go after our dreams
Not to be deterred by thunderous storms that would cloud our vision
Revealing that we could be anything that we desired to be
You steered us past the negativity that waited patiently in the
Shadows like a robber ready to steal our dreams away.
Drown them in the darkness of the absence of positivity
And snatch right out of our hands any plans for victory
You informed us that we could travel to unchartered sands
That our ears should only be open to bands that would enhance our frame of thought
That we were swimming in oceans of infinite possibilities
And it was ours for the taking
And I listened
I believed you
I received your message and took it to heart
Started seeing an illuminated light at the end of a tunnel