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Stampede On The Stairs
Stampede On The Stairs
Posted on 09/10/2021
“Tell someone close to you that you love them because you never know when something could happen,” said Mr. Silva. “Use this as a reminder to appreciate what you have.”By Stacia Harris
BCS Communications

In the early morning hours as the sun rose today, Owen High School (OHS) students and staff along with area first responders began a special tradition for their community. The Stampede on the Stairs was organized by Owen High Graduate ('11) and OHS School Resource Officer Matthew Owenby.

“Each year to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, I plan a special workout to honor the lives lost that day, especially the first responders who paid the ultimate price in service of others,” said Deputy Owenby.

As Deputy Owenby reflected on how he would commemorate 9/11 this year, he discovered an opportunity to involve the entire Owen community. The Stampede on the Stairs was born thanks to students who expressed interest in planning an event to mark this somber anniversary. Six teams of four people competed in a relay race this morning up and down the stairs of Warhorse Stadium. Fellow SROs comprised one team, as did JROTC students and staff, school administrators, coaches, faculty/staff, and students. The total steps taken? 2,071 -in memory of how many stairs first responders climbed to try to save the staff of the World Trade Center on that fateful day. Also, the batons used today have a very special meaning as well.

“The batons are made from a fire hose donated by the Swannanoa Fire Department. This week, I wrote on the batons the names of all of the first responders who died on 9/11. It not only represents the gear they carried up the World Trade Center, but also represents their sacrifice,” said Deputy Owenby.

This morning’s event was special for everyone who participated. It struck a particular chord with Marine (former) and Math Teacher Kyle Silva.

“It was really special,” said Mr. Silva. “I remember that I was a sophomore in high school on 9/11/2001. None of my students were born that day. Just remembering how it changed my life, it’s more and more important to express to the generation who didn’t live through it the significance of that day.”

Deputy Owenby plans to make Stampede on the Stairs an annual tradition for the Warhorses. While it was a lively event that helped bring a community together, participants were reflective of how that tragic day changed our lives and society dramatically.

“Tell someone close to you that you love them because you never know when something could happen,” said Mr. Silva. “Use this as a reminder to appreciate what you have.”

Tonight, Deputy Owenby is also spearheading a fundraising effort at the Owen High varsity football game. All proceeds will go to the family of fallen Black Mountain firefighter Garrett Presnell, who passed away last week.
“Tell someone close to you that you love them because you never know when something could happen,” said Mr. Silva. “Use this as a reminder to appreciate what you have.”

Buncombe County Schools is in the process of reviewing its website to ensure compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Buncombe County Schools does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its education programs or activities and is required by Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 and federal regulations to not discriminate in such a manner. This requirement extends to admission and employment. Inquiries about the application of Title IX and its implementing federal regulations may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator and/or the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education. The Title IX Coordinator's contact information is: Shanon Martin, shanon.martin@bcsemail.org, 828-255-5918, 175 Bingham Road, Asheville, NC 28806.

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