One year to the day of football star and senior Shak Pershey's death at North Topsail Beach, students at Southwest High School honored his memory with a fundraising walk Friday.
The "I Got You" walk raised money for safety devices in the area of the beach where Pershey drowned on May 23, 2013. He was caught in a rip current and pulled to sea. His body was found early in the morning May 24.
"He was still a student at the school, but he didn't get the chance to graduate," said assistant coach David Mcleod. "He left behind a lot of friends."
Almost the entire school walked the track at Southwest. Each student paid $2 a piece to walk for an hour instead of attending the final period. The money will go towards items such as life preservers or life rings.
The students raised $800.
Since the incident, Pershey's number 12 jersey has been retired. However, many students who knew Pershey have memorial t-shirts.
"We don't want that to happen to anybody whether it's related to a school, a family, or anything like that," said Jimmie Taylor, one of Pershey's teammates.