Kaleb Honea’s jersey hangs down from the Memorial Stadium stands during a September football game. (Lenia Lange/Rider Media )
Kaleb Honea’s jersey hangs down from the Memorial Stadium stands during a September football game.

Lenia Lange/Rider Media

Reflecting on Kaleb as graduation nears

May 6, 2022

“There isn’t enough writing on the planet to answer that question.”

Amanda Bolding gives this response when asked what she misses the most about her late son, Kaleb Honea.

With graduation approaching, many parents are preparing for their children to take the next step of their lives into adulthood, but for Bolding, her journey looks a little different.

“It’s been extremely tough,” Bolding said. “It’s hard seeing people posting senior pictures and opening admission letters, and instead of getting to do that, we’re reading scholarships in his memory.”

It has been nearly two years since Kaleb passed away from an automobile accident, but his spirit lives on through his parents and his friends who continue to honor his memory.

“(Kaleb’s friends) mean everything,” Bolding said. “The boys still come over to the house and some of them still go out to the crash site to make sure it stays taken care of.”

“I wear his ashes every day since his mom gave me the necklace,” Logan Rex, one of Kaleb’s best friends, said. “I’ll wear it until I can’t any longer.”

Being best friends since pre-K, Rex has been coming to terms with Kaleb’s absence during an important stage in one’s life. 

“It’s been hard knowing that he won’t be walking the stage with us,” Rex said. “Even though he’s not here physically, he’s here mentally with everyone who needs him there.”

While it may not be the same, Bolding is able to experience graduation through the lives of the people Kaleb held closest to during his life. 

“He’s not here, but his classmates are and they all went through this together,” Bolding said. “This would have been his shining moment, and as much as I’m not looking forward to the reality that he’s not going to be there, I know in my heart that he’s there.”

It’s been almost two years since Kaleb Honea has passed away. (Courtesy)

Even though he isn’t here in physicality, Kaleb will be honored after graduation on May 27 at Memorial Stadium. Students are welcome to come back to the field after graduation concludes where a moment of silence will take place and Kaleb’s parents will be presented with his diploma for each of them.

There are some people in life who leave a lasting impact, and Kaleb was one of them. While his life may have been short, he inspired so many around him and continues through his legacy. 

Ryleigh Neufeld, another close friend of Kaleb, remembers his compassion and dedicated effort to helping those around him.

“I miss Kaleb’s positive energy,” Neufeld said. “He knew what you needed to hear to make you laugh when you were about to cry and his outlook on things was just amazing. I also miss his passion to always help people whenever he could.”

Time is a concept that is hard to grasp, and for Bolding it feels as if none has passed at all.

“It’s like the movie Groundhog Day,” Bolding said. “It’s essentially like living the same day over and over again. Every day I wake up and am reminded that he’s not here. My life inevitably stopped on August 4, 2020.”

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Allie Stubblefield, Staff Writer

Going into her senior year, Stubblefield is excited for her first year on staff. She enjoys 70s music, anything related to Harry Styles, reading, and is...

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    Amanda BoldingMay 6, 2022 at 1:48 pm

    Thank you to The Rider Chronicle, The Rider Football Team, and each and every staff, student, and person who loved my baby, represented my baby, and honors my baby. As his mother, no words express what it means to know he was encompassed in so many ways, and loved so much. Thank you so much.

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