By Bonny Van

The Catholic Commentator 

On the second day into the New Year, alumni, family and friends of St. Michael the Archangel High in Baton Rouge gathered to remember and to pray for Carley McCord, a member of the Class of 2007.  

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Father Ryan Hallford, chaplain for St. Michael the Archangel High School in Baton Rouge, leads a rosary for Carley McCord on Jan. 2. McCord, a 2007 graduate, died Dec. 28 in a plane crash in Lafayette. She worked as a sports sideline reporter for multiple media outlets. Photo by Bonny Van | The Catholic Commentator 

 

McCord died just days earlier, on Dec. 28, in a plane crash in Lafayette. The plane was headed to Atlanta for the Peach Bowl featuring LSU.  

McCord was 30 years old. Family members of both McCord and her husband, Steve Ensminger Jr., joined the crowd to offer up their prayers during a rosary lead by St. Michael High School chaplain Father Ryan Hallford.  

“The alumni in her class contacted the school and said they wanted to do something to honor her and so we offered a rosary to help people gather and remember and celebrate her life,” said principal Ellen Lee.  

With school still out for the Christmas break, the quiet campus seemed especially somber. In the lobby of the school’s multipurpose building, various media outlets set up cameras and conducted interviews. A video screen on one wall projected McCord doing what she loved, reporting from the sidelines of various sports events. Inside the auditorium, a picture of a smiling McCord on a jumbo screen on stage reminded everyone of why she was so loved by everyone who knew her.  

Khloe Page, alumni coordinator for St. Michael, said she first got to know McCord through McCord’s participation in alumni projects. But, their business relationship quickly blossomed into a deep friendship as the two began to take on more events and share ideas on getting alums and the community in supporting the high school.  

“She was very involved,” said Page. “Anything I would call her for, she would come and do it, no questions asked. She was our Alumni of the Year for 2018. She came back and spoke at career day, she did our class cup, she spoke about everything under the sun to make sure our kids knew that past high school, graduating from this school, that you can go on and do really great things in the community and even nationally.”  

McCord was also helping the school expand a multi-media curriculum through video streaming sporting events, according St. Michael advancement director Josh Galasso. Galasso said he was working with McCord to help find funding for the program, and the goal was to eventually have students work with her on the sidelines.  

“Carley was one of those alumni who loves their alma mater and wanted to give back,” said Galasso. “She was our emcee for the past three years for the annual auction. She was always at career day to give back and counsel the students on their career choices. She would do anything to help promote her school. She definitely will be missed.”  

“She loved the school and would come back and speak to the students about her struggles in her career and her fight to get her dream job in which she did accomplish and so she was very proud of that and willingly shared those insights with our students,” said Lee. “We were so blessed to have her as a part of our community.”