WILBRAHAM, MA (WGGB/WSHM)--A celebratory time for one local high school student-athlete. The 16-year-old star swimmer is on his way to Omaha, Nebraska after qualifying for the Olympic trials in three separate events. Western Mass News saw the unique way the school is supporting this swimmer.
Chants poured in from the school hallway for 16-year-old Josh Parent as the Minnechaug Regional High School student-athlete is headed to the Olympic Trials for swimming.
"It's really exciting but also kind of nerve-wracking, because I’ve been to a few meets where I've gotten glimpses of it, where I've gotten to see a few people that qualified and make the Olympic team, but I've never really been to an experience, of this scale, where I'm facing people that are faster than me, or as fast as me and I'm not the top kid there, so it puts the extra reality on top of it," Josh said.
Wanting to calm those nerves and recognize Parent for his incredible success already, Principal Steven Hale came up with an idea.
"he's not in the principal’s office very often, so I called him down to talk about how we could stream it next week, and what waves he was in, meanwhile we had a secret announcement that went out, that was code for all the teachers to bring their kids down to the main hall," Hale said.
Josh told Western Mass News he had absolutely no idea this was coming.
"Did you know about any of this?" We asked Josh.
"No, I mean I got a hint a few minutes before from a friend, so it was very much a surprise. It was good but it was also pretty mortifying," He said.
Despite the nerves flowing, Josh is also reminded there is nothing to worry about. His buddy Dominic Mazzuca told Western Mass News, he is going to be with him every step of the way.
"I will be texting him every second of the day, every second of the hour. He will not go without a text, and if he doesn't respond, I will force him to respond," Mazzuca said.
Josh’s mother, Amy is also excited the family gets to witness his big moment.
WILBRAHAM, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- A local high school swimmer is setting records above and beyond…
"We're excited as fans of the sport, and as parents of a swimmer that will be there. We are super excited," Amy said.
Josh will head out to Omaha, Nebraska where the trials are based. He'll arrive there on June 8 and officially compete on June 13.