The school year for FCPS begins on Wednesday, August 14 and what better way to celebrate the opening of a brand new school than inviting the Lexington community for a ribbon cutting. Elected officials, members of the fire and police department, Brenda Cowan family members, teachers, and students were present for this special day.

Brenda Cowan: group of people cutting a ribbon
Photo by Austin Johnson/HJ

Myron Thompson, Chief Operating Officer for FCPS, began the morning by thanking all for coming out and showing support for BCE. “It is a wonderful day and I am so glad to have you here. On behalf of our Board of Education and Superintendent Manny Caulk, we want to thank you all for coming to celebrate the ribbon cutting of Brenda Cowan Elementary.”

Thompson then introduced the Lexington Fire Department Honor Guard who raised the flag on the school’s flag pole. Hudson Peden, a student at BCE, led the group of people in attendance with the Pledge of Allegiance and Joseph Wrightson, Music Teacher at BCE, sang the National Anthem.

Brenda Cowan: woman speaking at a podium
Mayor Linda Gorton – Photo by Austin Johnson/HJ

Others that spoke before the actual ribbon cutting were Stephanie Aschmann Spires, Board Chair of FCPS; Mayor Linda Gorton; Fire Chief Kristin Chilton; Rachel Moxley, Brenda Cowan’s first cousin; and Principal Williams.

“There is so much excitement in the air surrounding the opening of this school and I really always get excited about the beginning of school. It’s a new beginning full of opportunity, full of energy, not only for the children, but for the teachers and for the families and for our community,” said Mayor Gorton.

Cowan’s cousin, Rachel Moxley, was asked by her family to speak on behalf of them with a few remarks about Brenda and what this moment means to them. “On behalf of my family, the Cowan Family, we are so grateful and thankful for the out pouring of love and the tribute in honoring our cousin and our family member is overwhelming.”

Brenda Cowan: woman speaking at a podium
Rachel Moxley – Photo by Austin Johnson/HJ

Before the ceremony began, Moxley brought Cowan’s old uniform and helmet from Alabama to be put on display in a cabinet at the front entrance. This will help the students learn about who their school is named after and why she was and still is so special to this community.

Principal Williams was last to speak and he thanked those who influenced him throughout his life. His mother, siblings, his 5th grade teacher, and of course his lovely wife. He discussed the four main pillars this school will instill in all of the children that walk through those doors.

Brenda Cowan: man speaking at a podium
Principal Williams – Photo by Austin Johnson/HJ

Williams finished his speech and invited guests over to the main doors where the ribbon was waiting. After the ceremonial cut, everyone went inside to eat cake in the brand new cafeteria. They were also invited to tour around the new facility and see what BCE has to offer for the new students.




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