With the Escoffier at the Ritz dinner fast approaching, I wanted to draw your attention to something special: a set of silver serving trays we use in the dining room. You’ve probably seen them before. They’re big and shiny and come out most often on nights like the Escoffier dinner where presentation is particularly emphasized – they are beautiful; but the fact that they’re beautiful, or the fact that they’re made of real silver, are only tiny parts of what make them so special.
Many years ago, 1996 to be exact, there was an SCS student named Mark Webster. I’ve only had the chance to talk to a couple of people who knew him at the time, but I think I would have liked him. They describe him as a gentle soul with kind eyes, a young man who had plans to travel when he was finished school. In fact, he was celebrating a job offer in Australia with some friends on the night his young life was tragically taken in a car accident.
The loss of any community member will always create a ripple of grief throughout, but in a community as small and tightly-knit as this one, those ripples run awfully deep.
The silver trays are a much treasured memorial to Mark, generously gifted to the school by his parents. They’re engraved with his name and the dates he attended (1994-1996), and every time they’re brought out the story of Mark is told. All these years later, even to those of us who never had the good fortune to know him, his absence is felt and he is remembered.