Street sign installation for May 28 at South Plains College
LEVELLAND – On May 28 (Thursday), family and friends will gather at South Plains College to view the installation of a street sign at the entrance to the parking lot on the north side of the Administration Building. The name on the newly erected sign will be Zane Timmons Avenue.
The SPC Street Sign Naming was one of the items in the live auction featured during the 22nd Annual South Plains College Scholarship Gala in February. The item was donated by the South Plains College Board of Regents and grants the winning bidder naming rights on the sign for one year.
This unique prize is the perfect way to showcase, honor or memorialize someone special in the life of the winning bidder. Plans are in place for this to be an auction item every year. The sign will remain on display until the next Scholarship Gala. Carl and Carol McDonald of Levelland outbid all competitors to win this first-time honor.
“We figured this would be a good memory for Zane, and it will help Carrie and Joe, too,” Mrs. McDonald said. “That’s why we got it.”
Mrs. McDonald and Carrie Timmons are sisters, and their families share a unique bond. Because of the close relationship shared between Mr. McDonald and his late nephew Zane, he wanted to do something that would honor his memory.
“I thought this would be a neat idea, and if someone asked ‘Why’d you name it that?’ Then we could tell them the story behind it,” McDonald said.
Zane Timmons, 16, died on July 26, 2017. His mother Carrie Timmons said he was an
incredibly kind, talented, smart and handsome young man. And she hopes these traits
are what people remember about her son.
“I hope they remember him being a wonderful kid,” said Mrs. Timmons. “He loved everyone and was a wonderful friend.”
She said Zane had big heart and he took kids under his wings. He would befriend the students who may otherwise not had many close friends. Timmons said once someone became Zane’s friend they immediately had a group of new friends. She described them all as an unusual pack who were always welcome in their home. And, she always made sure there were snacks and drinks for at least 12 kids.
“He was one of a kind and all of his friends would tell you that,” said Mrs. Timmons. “Anyone who came across him would tell you he was absolutely one of a kind. He had an amazing heart.”
Mrs. Timmons’ fondest memories of Zane involved his love and talent for music. He taught himself to play the guitar utilizing YouTube videos. He soon learned to play the piano and electric keyboards through videos and books.
“We kept buying him music books,” she said. “He loved music, any kind of music! He had an array of music that he loved.”
Although he did not want to be involved in the high school band, he did have interest in other extracurricular activities and became involved in football and running track. At the end of his freshman year Zane needed to undergo brain surgery which unfortunately ended his football and track careers.
“He loved football. Absolutely loved football,” she said. “And he didn’t think he’d like to run track when they first told him he would have to do that, but he really ended up liking it a lot.”
In addition to his passion for sports, Zane enjoyed working on his car and drawing. Carrie and her husband Joe surprised him during lunch the Thursday before Spring Break of his sophomore year with a Dodge Challenger.
“I brought his favorite lunch which was McDonald’s McChickens,” she said. “I got all of his friends to come outside and we totally surprised him. He was so excited!”
Timmons continues to work on the car to this day and is preparing it to be a show
car at suicide prevention events to continue Zane’s legacy.
The McDonald and Timmons families will honor Zane’s memory on the South Plains College Levelland campus with the renamed sign. SPC holds special meaning to the families, as they have a long history with the college.
The Timmons both graduated from South Plains College. He earned his electronic service technician training and she obtained her cosmetology certification. The two met while she was a senior at Levelland High School and he was entering his first semester at SPC.
The McDonalds have been fixtures at the college’s scholarship gala for 17 years, and they regularly participate in the live auction portion of the event. McDonald said the donation is their way of giving back, a tradition established by L.E. McDonald, Carl’s grandfather. L.E. McDonald carried the signature note for residents in Cochran County when the college was established.
“We’ve been blessed for the past 18 years through the ownership of the store (Plains Motor Supply) to find ways to give back,” he said. “Y’all always have lots of neat things to bid on but the story underneath it is the money goes towards scholarships.”
“It’s for the students,” Mrs. McDonald said.
“We know it’s going to benefit and help somebody,” McDonald added. “It’s just money, and we can go to work and make some more money. These young people are our future.”
“I have sat back for 40 years watching the college grow slowly, and I think it’s great for the community,” McDonald said.
Mrs. McDonald added that their grandchildren will go to South Plains College someday. She is an SPC alumna where she earned an Associate of Arts degree. The McDonalds’ youngest daughter Cyrene received her cosmetology certification from SPC. They are also the parents of Cassion.
McDonald said the day of the dedication will be a joyful day to remember the good and to look forward to the future. His family is proud of everything he accomplished in his short life.
For more information on ways to contribute to scholarships, contact Julie Gerstenberger director of development and alumni relations at 806-716-2020.