Ballinger surprises Jodie Halford with Pink Out
Ballinger folks showed their appreciation and love for one of their own on Monday.
For the last 30 years Jodie Halford has helped organize and coordinate send-offs for Ballinger ISD, from academic competitions to sporting events. Recently, she has been battling breast cancer and was headed to surgery to remove any remaining cancerous tissue on Tuesday. But, her husband, Myron, and her niece, Renee Fulton, had other plans.
The plans started with a surprise, with Myron "kidnapping" Jodie from The Treadmill just before 10:30 a.m. From there, she was driven to the main entrance of Ballinger High School. That's where the big surprise revealed itself: Students from Ballinger High School, junior high students, as well as teachers, administrators, principals, superintendent Jeff Butts, and others showed their heartfelt appreciation with a "Pink Out."
The emotion was genuine, the support and appreciation were visible from every student and teacher out there as they wished Halford the best in her breast cancer battle.
But, it's Ballinger, and they pull out all of the stops for one of their own. There was a police and fire escort.
Ballinger Police lieutenant Stan Maresch drove a black truck at the front with the blue and red lights flashing. Maresch's truck was followed by the Ballinger Fired Dept rescue truck. Next, Halford was in a maroon truck driven by Myron. Ballinger Police Chief Ray Cornutt drove a white truck, lit up, at the back of the convoy. Sirens wailed and greeted everyone lined up to wish Halford the best. Teachers held a banner, "We're behind YOU Rootin for YOU-GO-FIGHT-WIN."
The school band serenaded Halford as the procession made it's way down the main entrance. But, again, this is Ballinger.
The next surprise was a trip down residential streets to Ballinger Elementary, where students and staff lined the street to offer encouragement of their own. Halford waved to everyone, gracious and grateful, just as so many teachers, alumni, and students are grateful for all that she's done for the students over 3 decades.
Once passed the elementary, the escort traveled to Hutchins Avenue, where employees and others stood along the sidewalk in front of the First National Bank of Ballinger holding pink helium balloons and waving. Nurses and staff from Ballinger Home Health & Hospice held signs declaring "We love you Jodie." They also held pink balloons. The balloons were released as the procession continued up Hutchins.
It was a worthy sendoff for someone who has done so much for the students in Ballinger. Halford is loved and appreciated by people from throughout the community, a fixture in all things Bearcats.
The Runnels County Register wishes Mrs. Halford the best of luck in her battle against breast cancer.