Two Farragut High School students were among three seniors from area Knox County Schools recently chosen as recipients of the Evan Richey Memorial Scholarship.
Tina Richey, mother of the namesake, the late Hardin Valley Academy graduate Evan Richey, said this year four $2,000 scholarships were awarded, three of which went to Mason Motley and Christine Sprague of Farragut High School and Linnea Johnsen of HVA.
This week focuses is on Motley; Johnsen was profiled in the May 6 issue.
Tina and Mark Richey established the scholarship in memory of their son, who lost his life to osteosarcoma on the day he received his high school diploma in 2019.
Two additional scholarships were awarded this year, in part due to proceeds raised from mask sales made by Tina Richey.
“I felt honored to have been chosen to receive the scholarship,” said Motley, son of Tim and Kristin Motley and brother of Carson and Cali Motley. “It means a lot that I was recognized as someone deserving of this scholarship.
“I was so happy for Mason when we found out that he had won the scholarship, but it was also a little bittersweet,” his mother said. “In Mason’s essay, he talked about how much Evan inspired him while they were both fighting cancer. What I wanted most out of Mason applying for this scholarship was for the Richey family to know how much of an impact their son had on our family,” Kristin Motley added. “They have turned their loss into something really special.”
“I think I received this scholarship because I feel like my essay related to the Richey family in a meaningful way,” Mason Motley said. “They understood what I went through first hand.”
“Mason wrote about his (own) battle with osteosarcoma and was at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital at the same time as Evan,” Richey said. “Mason described how Evan motivated him to stay positive and appreciate the little victories.”
Motley said he is in remission, has been cancer free for two years and is “doing great.”
“I was diagnosed with osteosarcoma in May 2018, the summer going into my sophomore year of high school,” he added.
“My mom told me about Evan when we were both in the hospital,” Motley said.
“He inspired me because I heard about his struggles and all of the rounds of chemo that he had to do,” he added. “I felt like if he could endure setback after setback then I could get through my bad days as well.
“The fact that he went to a high school right near me, was around my age and had the same cancer just made it more personal. I felt like I knew him even though we never met.”
Motley will attend the University of Tennessee and major in sports management.