Golden Lion Award: Tommy Walker

CARL JUNCTION, Mo. — As the end of the school year grows closer, we highlight the final winner of the Golden Lion Award for Volunteerism.

“I’ve been here since kindergarten moved to Carl Junction at about six. We’ve been here ever since,” said Tommy Walker, CJHS senior.

Now Carl Junction senior Tommy Walker is about to graduate.

His time at the high school has been busy, including athletics like football and golf – and not just for himself.

“Help with the junior golf program at Briarbrook. Something that I enjoy doing. It’s kind of towards my passion,” said Walker.

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He helps with basic skills for young athletes.

“I’m a volunteer coach. And so there’s putting, chipping, hitting it. I go there and help coach these kids and hopefully spark an interest in the game,” said Walker.

Tommy pitches in to make weekend food packs for Bright Futures Carl Junction.

He’s part of the service learning class – reading to some of the littlest Bulldogs, tutoring others and mentoring some of those with special needs.

“They love to play games like they’re very active. If they want to talk about something, they’re always, we’re always open to hear what they have to say,” said Walker.

Tommy also volunteers at the Joplin Humane Society – walking dogs.

He looks forward to Veterans Day each year, pitching in on the annual school assembly.

“they get one day they should probably get more but it’s important that you make the most make the most of it. And they also love talking to a younger generation about their stories in their life. And I always love hearing that,” said Walker.

Teachers say Tommy is a hard worker when it comes to helping out – but he also elevates whatever he’s involved in.

“If he’s volunteering. If he’s out working with his sports practices, it’s going to be fun. Because Tommy knows how to make it fun. And I think that’s how he’s able to get people on board to come and do these projects with him,” said Kristi Alford, CJHS teacher.

Tommy is planning ahead for the future, which includes several more years of school.

“Going to attend MSSU. Play golf for Missouri Southern and planning on majoring in chemistry and biology. Getting my prerequisites to go to pharmacy school,” said Walker.

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