About one year ago, Dylan Jerrels passed away. However, no amount of time will stop the Steinbrenner band from honoring the memory of their late band member.
On Feb. 11, the band held a memorial of Jerrels, with current band students, band alumni, and family members of Jerrels all attending. The memorial was held at Cedar St., Florida, a small island off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico that is north of Lutz, and those attending gathered at Cedar Key Point, a large dock.
There, everyone received a rose and walked up to the end of the dock in groups or by themselves. A small prayer or thought is made, and the rose is tossed into the ocean. After everyone had their turn, the group went to dinner and had fun after the somber afternoon.
Good friends of Jerrels were glad that the band held the memorial. Junior Adrian Fernandez considers him and Jerrels to have been friends, talking late into the evening or hanging out while waiting for their respective rides after a typical evening of band practice.
“At first I was upset about his death, but then you realize you have to move on. But I still miss him, and there are days where I wish he was still here,” said Fernandez.
Not everyone that attended the memorial was particularly close to Jerrels. Take senior Erin O’Shea, who was never that close to Jerrels, but still wished to pay her respects to her fellow bandmate. The fear of being forgotten is something that O’Shea is familiar with, and it’s something that she wishes does not happen to Jerrels.
“When someone passes away, the biggest fear for me is forgetting them. I thought it was a really nice way to remember Dylan,” said O’Shea.
Both O’Shea and Fernandez enjoyed spending the day with friends and coming together to pay respects to Jerrels.
“I thought it was a good send off for Dylan. It was fulfilling and I’m glad I did it,” said Fernandez.
Aliya Leary // Staff Writer