LRHS dedicates “Forever Mustangs” memorial

Reva Gandhi-Mustangs Ahead  

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- The LRHS Forever Mustangs Memorial Walk was unveiled Wednesday in honor of LRHS alumni who passed away at their time at the Ranch.   

The Forever Memorial was built to honor LRHS Mustangs Chase Coyner and Matthew Powers, both of whom passed away in a Sept. 2018 car accident.   

The memorial also honors Andrea Barberena Rojas and Dashwood Payen, both of whom also passed away in 2018.  

The rock placed beside the memorial remembers those who passed away before graduating LRHS.  

Powers mom, Rebecca Powers stated, “We hope that future Mustangs can use this memorial as a gathering place.”  

The LRHS band introduced the memorial with a welcoming song.   

LRHS Principal Dustin Dahlquist took the stage and opened with a few words of welcome.  

Dahlquist said, “The Forever Mustangs Memorial Walk is an extremely powerful and beautiful addition to the LRHS courtyard.”  

Dan and Rebecca Powers, Matthew’s parents, continued the ceremony with heartfelt quote from author Alex Maclean.

Rebecca Powers choked back tears as she read, “Those we love don’t go away. They walk beside us every day. Unseen, unheard, but always near. Still loved, still.”  

The Powers and Coyner families cut the ribbon to the memorial and were the first to walk down the Forever Mustang Memorial Walk.   

Shaylenne Coyner, Chase’s mother, stated, “We are so happy that our boys were honored, and we hope that future Mustangs see this memorial and feel inspired.”  

The Forever Mustangs Memorial has been a long awaited addition to the LRHS campus.  

Powers best friend, LRHS graduate Briggette Bach said, “This memorial is really special, especially since nothing like this has ever been done to another student.”  

The ceremony ended with the audience and LRHS band following the parents down the Forever Mustangs Memorial.  

The families and administration expressedtheir appreciation to everyone who helped create the memorial –   

  • Lakewood Ranch Sign’s and More for donating the temporary sign.  
  • Ralph Taylor’s Nurseries and LRHS agriculture teacher Janyel Taylor for the donation of the memorial tree.  
  • Wow Landscapes for donating the time and equipment to place the stone.  
  • Euro Quarries for helping find the right stone.  
  • Westcoast Landscape and Lawns for donating the material and labor for the landscape and irrigation work.  
  • The LRHS staff for their patience and assistance.  

Mackenzie Sisson assisted with this story.