Huntington Prep star says thanks
Editor's note: Huntington Prep boys basketball star Andrew Wiggins reflects on two years he lived in Huntington in this letter to people in the community.
Wiggins is the top-rated high school prospect in the Class of 2013 and signed with the Kansas Jayhawks.
The Canadian graduated Friday night from Huntington St. Joe.
To the people and community of Huntington:
I just wanted to thank Huntington for your support for me and my Huntington Prep teammates and coaches these past two years. Without the community, none of what has been accomplished would have been attainable. I hope that when you hear or read my name, you are proud to say I played my high school days here in Huntington. Because I am proud to say I played here.
I like to represent my hometown of Thornhill, Ontario, and my country of Canada in a positive light and I will do the same for Huntington and for my team and coaches of Huntington Prep. It has been such a positive experience and I would advise any player to come to Huntington Prep.
One of the best things about my experience here is St. Joseph Central Catholic H.S. where we all attend. There are a lot of good people in that building from the principal to the teachers to the janitor; I will never forget all the positive influences they have been in my development as a young man. My peers at St. Joe have also been supportive of me and have always treated me as one of their own. I am not different, just a kid, and at St. Joe I could be. Thank you.
I also want to let the area know that Huntington Prep has brought so much here. I will be gone, but (head coach) Rob Fulford and his staff will always bring in great players and great individual community members. They will always bring national attention that Huntington wouldn't have if Huntington Prep didn't exist. In these days and times positive attention to an area isn't guaranteed so when you have it, embrace it. Support Huntington Prep because they bring such a positive outlook on Huntington, WV.
I would like to personally thank Coach Rob, Coach Arkell Bruce, Coach Dave Meddings, Coach Ryan Arrowood and Coach Baker Neal for everything. Words cannot explain how grateful I am to, in my opinion, the best coaching staff in America. They bring players like me and my teammates to this area to give this area something special. They are great coaches and are great community members who teach us to be great players and great community members as well. I appreciate them for bringing me to the area and to Huntington Prep. It's been a great ride. Our strength and conditioning coach, Chris Lane, is one of the best in the nation. I want him to know how much I appreciate his program.
I also want to thank all the host families and board members of Huntington Prep. They are some of the nicest people I have ever met and they have truly shown me a ton of love and support. I have been very fortunate to get to know them all. My host family (Scott, Lesley, Luke and Clayton Thomas) has been my second family over the past two years and I will love them forever. Thank you for opening up your doors so I could be part of your home. I also would like to thank all the support from Dain and Norrie Price as well as Mrs. Alicia Anderson. They work so hard for my teammates and I. Also Stephanie Arrowood and Candace Meddings for all the work they do unpaid for us. Thank you all.
I have made some lifelong friends from here such as the Johnson family. Scott, Holli, Mychelle, Mariah, Maki and my best friend Mychal will always have a place in my heart.
I am from Canada and I am going to Kansas to play college basketball. I will hopefully be drafted to a city that I enjoy. But I will always have a place for Huntington in my heart and memories. I will not forget all the sacrifices they made for me and my teammates. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.