Whitley County High School (WCHS) Junior, Fisher Barton, would have turned 17 years old Friday, but tragically his life was cut short due to an Oct. 4 ATV accident.
On Friday evening, many of his friends, family and teachers gathered in the near freezing cold at the high school amphitheater to remember a special young man, who had touched all of their lives during his brief time on earth.
“As teachers we do our jobs and try to make an impact on our students’ lives. To me Fisher did the opposite. He impacted my life,” WCHS Agriculture teacher Brian Prewitt told the crowd, unable to choke back tears.
In addition to being Junior Class President, Barton was also a member of the school’s 2019 skeet and trap shooting championship team, and an officer in the school’s Future Farmers of America (FFA) program.
Prewitt noted that Barton would frequently say, “Every day is like Christmas,” and that he hadn’t given much thought to that saying until recently.
“Thinking about the true meaning of Christmas, it is all about giving to others, loving other people, and about spending time with family and friends. It is not about getting gifts like our world seems to be caught up in, and Fisher was definitely not caught up in that,” Prewitt noted.
“He embodied those things each and every day that I knew him. He was always helping others, whether that was teaching other students how to weld or how to land judge. He was always there to lend a helping hand with anything going on.”
Prewitt added that Barton always had a smile on his face, had an unforgettable laugh and never had a bad day during the time he knew him.
“His vibe showed everyone that he truly cared about people. You knew that you were part of his friends and family the first day you met him,” Prewitt said. “He had a way with people. It didn’t matter their age. He could and did connect with them in his own unique way.”
Whitley County Board of Education member Kenneth Carr, who presided over the event, thanked the crowd of about 100 people for coming out on what would have been Barton’s birthday.
“Fisher loved the Lord with all of his heart and loved others like Jesus does. This is why each of you are here tonight because you have experienced and received this love,” Carr noted.
During the ceremony FFA Vice-President Ben Nichols and FFA member Corey Rountree performed some of Barton’s favorite country music songs.
Also during the ceremony FFA President Gracie Brashear showed a special video presentation featuring an array of pictures featuring Barton, which were set to music.
The event concluded with a candle light vigil.
“Tonight is indeed a time of remembrance. Tonight is a night of celebration, a celebration of friendship, a celebration of encouragement, and a celebration of love,” Carr added. “These memories will go on, and lives touched for generations to come … Remember to always live like Fisher.”