Billingsley student’s character shines bright

Landon Reed of Billingsley High School received recognition as a Burlsworth Character Award honoree on March 9, as his family and entire student body were on hand in the gym to witness the accomplishment.

“He is truly a good-hearted person from top to bottom, inside and out,” said Nancy Reed, Landon’s mother. “He has a loving spirit and likes to see the good in everybody.”

Reed has played multiple sports at Billingsley during his high school career, and throughout that time has demonstrated the outstanding character and sportsmanship required to be nominated for the award.

“I’m just thankful that he chose to be this way, and I’d like to think that God gave me that blessing to raise,” said Nancy Reed, Landon’s mother. “He is a community child. So many people take him and love on him.”

He has attended Billingsley since third grade and has played football, baseball, track and basketball.

“It makes me proud, because I’m doing something that makes the people around me proud,” Reed said. “It’s just the way that my mom and my whole family raised me.”

Reed’s determination and willingness to succeed in athletics does not out weigh his ability to be gracious and humble, even in defeat.

“He has no problem hitting you hard and knocking you down, but he’s going to give you his hand and help you back up,” Nancy Reed said. “That’s just who he is.”

The award’s namesake is Brandon Burlsworth, a football player who played offensive line at the University of Arkansas from 1995 to 1998 and became an All-American after originally walking on with the team.

Burlsworth was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the third round of the 1999 NFL draft, but was killed in a car accident before having the opportunity to play a down in the NFL.

Brandon’s story is told in the movie “Greater” that was released Aug. 26, 2016.

For the past 11 years, the award has honored players in Arkansas, but now shows nationwide recognition.

According to Principal Mike Blair, Billingsley has received more awards in the two years that he has been there than any other school that he has been at.

“That’s a tribute to you,” said Blair, to the crowd of students. “There are a lot more recipients sitting in those stands.”

 

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