Remembering Colten Paige
"Walk for Colten" to be Held to Raise Awareness and Scholarship Money
February 28, 2017
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On December 13, 2015, the Paige family lost a piece of their heart. Colten Andrew Paige had a heart of gold and was his parents’ pride and joy.
In remembrance of their son, they have put together the first Suicide Awareness “Walk for Colten.” Donations raised at the walk will benefit for the Colten Andrew Paige Memorial Scholarship Fund. These scholarships will be awarded to two graduating Calallen seniors who are enrolling into college to pursue a career in a public safety field. This event will take place on Saturday, March 25 at 9 AM-11 AM at the Calallen Middle School Track. Many people were excited to hear about this event.
“When I heard about the Walk for Colten, a suicide awareness event benefiting a memorial scholarship fund, my heart melted,” Margo Ayers said. “Colten was loved by so many and his life should never be forgotten. I think this is a wonderful event to raise suicide awareness and to help fund scholarships to Calallen High School for students pursuing careers in public safety. I hope others will consider joining the Walk for Colten to remember the beautiful and kind spirit he had, and encourage those who are suffering from, depression/mental illness to seek treatment. I think this Is a beautiful act of kindness and support, and it’s my honor to participate in this event.”
CHS English teacher, Bridgette Filla, is hoping for a positive outcome for this event and for the right message to get across.
“I hope that his memory will live on for years to come and that it can help other high schoolers who have the same problems,” Mrs. Filla said. “Hopefully it will send a message of support and remembrance and the togetherness of the community in helping remembering him.”
Colten was born and raised in Corpus Christi, TX. He attended Calallen School district from K-12 and graduated in May of 2014.
“Colten left a legacy of love and friendship,” his parents said. “He taught us what truly loving someone was all about and he was not stingy with his friendship, he offered it to anyone who would accept it.”
He also had the ability to empathize with those that were different then him.
“He changed lives of young teenagers by listening to them and befriending them and would actually take the time to listen to their problems and offer support,” his parents said. “Many of the parents who’s kids grew up and graduated with Colten will tell you that he would walk up to them and carry on a meaningful conservation that left them smiling when he walked away.”
Colten was the youngest of his siblings. He has an older brother that he looked up to with tremendous respect. Colten grew up having a passion for baseball and fishing. He played baseball for CHS all 4 years in school, after graduation he spent most of his spare time fishing.
“After he graduated high school, he worked part-time at Sherwin Williams and was attending DelMar College where he was working on an associate’s degree in criminal justice,” his parents said. “His career dream was to become a law enforcement officer and someday work for the FBI.”
Colten’s career goal inspired his parents to begin the Colten Andrew Paige Memorial Scholarship to assist other students that had the same heart and goal of entering a career in public safety. In May 2015, they awarded $500 scholarships to two Calallen students to pay for dual credit courses.
“This year we will award $500 scholarships to two Calallen graduating seniors who will attend college to pursue a career in the field of public safety,” his parents said. “Our goal is to do this every year to honor Colten who gave so much love to us and his friends.”
Suicide is a permanent action to what is often a temporary problem.
“There are no do-overs. Many of the problems that seem to be “unbearable” today, won’t even be a memory a year from now. The consequences for those they love and leave behind are sentenced to a lifetime of pain, heartache, and what ifs,” his parents said. “Holidays, birthdays, vacations that use to be joyful are now a time we try to survive.”
His parents would also like for students to realize that allowing students to be bullied is the same as participating in bullying. Bullying is a sign of insecurity in ones on self-worth and will make an everlasting negative impact on someone’s life. It can also change the way the person being bullied feels about their own self-worth or lack of. If a student really wants to be remembered by their peers, be remembered for being the one who did not waiver in their values that everyone deserves respect.
“Suicide has left our family broken, although we have a strong loving bond for each other and a community that supported us greatly, we are all broken and we will be the rest of our lives,” his parents said. “Certainly Colten did not want this for us, but the reality is this is what suicide does to those loved ones left behind.
Colten’s parents wanted to give advice to students, as well as parents.
“For parents, I would say please don’t “wish” away problems/issues your child is experiencing as it doesn’t work. Don’t think a smile from your child means everything is okay,” they said. “Talk to them and listen, reach out for assistance. Depression is an illness, not a trait and there should be no shame in seeking out for help.”