Wednesday night the Unit 5 school board gathered for the first time since the deadly crash between a semi and a bus carrying the Normal West Community High School Junior Varsity Girls Basketball team.
It was a very emotional meeting and board members went around emphasizing how great of a person Charles Crabtree was. Crabtree was a beloved volunteer for the girls basketball program who died in the crash.
The meeting started with a moment of silence followed by a hand written speech by Superintendent Dr. Mark Daniel.
Charles Crabtree was a huge fan of candy, so to honor him the school board passed around his favorite candy, York Peppermint Patties, with his initials printed on them.
At the end of Dr. Daniel’s speech he announced a new tradition will be coming to Normal West. It’s called the Charles Crabtree award.
Daniel says it will be given to a varsity player who exhibits team spirit, sportsmanship and most of all Crabtree’s love for the game.
“Couldn’t be after a better a man,” said Area General Manager for First Student (Unit 5 Transportation), Chris Coyle. “He’s definitely a staple in the community. He’s definitely going to be missed.”
But it was not all sad and serious, the board also expressed their happiness because luckily every single girl on the basketball team is alright.