Northeast Times

Little Flower HS remembers Lacey Gallagher

In memory: Little Flower High School’s soc­cer team re­cently re­tired the No. 13 jer­sey that was worn by Lacey Galla­gh­er, a stu­dent who died in a car ac­ci­dent in 2007.

Little Flower Cath­ol­ic High School for Girls re­cently re­tired the No. 13 soc­cer jer­sey worn by Lacey Galla­gh­er, who died in a car ac­ci­dent in 2007 fol­low­ing her seni­or prom.

Lacey en­joyed her four years at Little Flower, where she flour­ished spir­itu­ally, aca­dem­ic­ally and so­cially.

Class­mate Ali Mc­Crossin Janda de­scribed Lacey as an ath­lete, class­mate, friend and sis­ter to the Little Flower com­munity.

“Lacey was kind, friendly, a gentle soul and blessed oth­ers with her life,” she said.

Lacey Galla­gh­er was 18 when she died April 28, 2007, fol­low­ing her prom. She and six friends were rid­ing in a sport util­ity vehicle on a wet and foggy night at about 3 a.m. on the Pennsylvania Turn­pike’s North­east Ex­ten­sion, south of the Quaker­town exit, on their way to the Po­cono Moun­tains.

The driver lost con­trol of the vehicle, which hit a con­crete bar­ri­er and rolled over be­fore land­ing on its roof. Lacey was ejec­ted and killed, while her friends were taken to the hos­pit­al with in­jur­ies. None was wear­ing seat belts. Drugs and al­co­hol were not factors.

Year after year, ath­let­ic dir­ect­or Adam Buchter would dis­trib­ute the soc­cer uni­forms, and the girls, out of re­spect, would not choose No. 13. So, this sea­son, when Buchter was as­sign­ing the soc­cer uni­forms, one of the stu­dents, Caleigh Galla­gh­er, class of 2015, clued him in.  

“We don’t use No. 13 any­more; that was Lacey’s num­ber,” she said.

Buchter was in­spired to re­tire No. 13.

“To know that Lacey still lives in the hearts of our cur­rent soc­cer play­ers gives me a re­newed un­der­stand­ing of the love that Lacey shines down on us every day,” he said.

Lacey’s par­ents and sib­lings, friends, coaches and the Little Flower fam­ily gathered in the gym as the No. 13 soc­cer uni­form was re­tired.

Thanks to the count­less fun­drais­ing ef­forts of Lacey’s fam­ily, they were able to es­tab­lish the Lacey Galla­gh­er Me­mori­al Schol­ar­ship Fund. This schol­ar­ship as­sists stu­dents in their pur­suit of a Cath­ol­ic high school edu­ca­tion.

In 2011, Gov. Tom Corbett signed Lacey’s Law, which lim­its the num­ber of pas­sen­gers teen drivers may have in the car and in­creases the num­ber of hours of be­hind-the-wheel ex­per­i­ence re­quired for a ju­ni­or li­cense.

Fol­low­ing the fifth an­niversary of Lacey’s death, Jen James, a friend and class­mate, wrote the fol­low­ing in the guest­book of the Lacey Galla­gh­er Schol­ar­ship Fund: 

“It truly is in­cred­ible the amount of love that sur­rounds you and your memory and that it will nev­er change. You have af­fected the lives of so many people and still so many to come.” ••

You can reach at noreply@bsmphilly.com.

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