On March 16, heaven opened its gates and welcomed a precious soul known as Julianna “Anna” Kay Castle.
Just 8-years old, this Boonville Elementary student affected countless lives well beyond classmates, friends, medical professionals and family. Simply put, she was greatly loved by everyone.
Annette Johnson, principal of Boonville Elementary, along with school faculty, arranged an event consisting of a balloon release and dedication of a statue to honor the special child on May 22. Its inscription reads, “Perhaps the stars in the sky are loved ones letting us know they are near by guiding us through the night.”
In addition, the school’s yearbook was dedicated to Anna this year, a copy of which was presented to the family at the ceremony.
Along with parents Jamie and Jamie Castle, and fifth-grade sister Avery, Anna was remembered and her life celebrated. With many wearing bows in their hair just as Anna loved to do, classmates released dozens of pink balloons into a clear blue sky on a perfect spring afternoon.
Johnson shared these thoughts: “Finally, with these pink balloons, we remember our dear friend Anna. We remember her stylish outfits and her matching bows. We remember her courage and the courage of her family. Our message for all to hear is that Anna was a special part of our school and was loved by everyone who met her.
“We release these balloons in her memory and as a tribute to her big sister Avery, who is an important part of our school. Anna’s courage and fight will be remembered by us all — and Avery’s never ending love, strength, and grace should be an example to her friends, both young and old.
“So now, I ask Anna and Avery’s classmates to release their pink balloons. You are missed and you are loved.”
The event was followed by a small reception with classmates and family, which capped a beautiful ceremony honoring a very special young lady. Anna will always be remembered.
T.K. Garrett is the EC data manager for Yadkin County Schools.