When my parents retired, they didn’t throw in the towel. Instead, they took in a underprivileged African-American boy to live with them. Over the past few years, CJ has become part of our family. My parents, in their late-60s, now spend many evenings at high school sporting events and parent-teacher conferences, surrounded by parents who are the age of my brothers and me.
This week, our local paper — possibly with visions of The Blind Side — ran a story on CJ and my parents:
Johnson previously attended school in Hopkins, but before ninth grade he moved to Edina to live with his “grandparents,” Doug and Sarah Jones.They have encouraged him in sports and academics and provided a stable home life.
The Joneses are not Johnson’s biological grandparents, but they have opened their home to the young scholar-athlete, who was basically without a stable home when they met him.
Sarah Jones, who served 13 years on the Edina School Board, provided a home for Johnson’s aunt during the time the aunt attended Edina High as an ABC student.
ABC is a program that offers minority students with a passion for academics a chance to attend Edina High School. One day, the aunt told Sarah Jones about her nephew.
“What raised my attention was the fact that C.J. was advanced in math,” said Sarah Jones. “He attended Hopkins West Middle School when he first came to live with us. When he started high school, he began attending Edina. The main emphasis in our household has always been academics, and C.J. accepted that.”
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!