Everett High School is mourning the loss of its athletic director Monday.
49-year-old Cindy Short was killed in a snowmobiling accident Sunday.
Short was much more than an athletic director to students, athletes, and those who knew her throughout the district.
"She was their mother, their brother, their sister, their aunt their uncle," Lansing Schools Athletic Coordinator Cheryl Thiesen said. "She would hound and harass them to make certain they were eligible to participate in sports. She was their individual cheerleader."
Staff admired that spirit and dedication, while students will never forget it. It's the experience Everett alum Erin Rennaker had with Short back in 1994 when she thought about quitting softball.
"I don't remember all of my teachers from high school, but I remember her," Rennaker said. "She taught me that I'm not a quitter, and that I'm stronger than the things going on in my life, and I did not quit."
Short was a chemistry teacher and coach before becoming athletic director in 1997. Under that position the school basketball teams won several state championships. Staff said it's Short's smile and sky blue eyes that could light up any room or gym.
"She was a team player," Everett High School Principal Norman Gear said. "She cared about kids, and she had a wonderful heart, and she'll be missed dearly."
According to the Ogemaw County Sheriff's Office, Short lost control of her snowmobile and struck a tree around 3:00 p.m. Sunday. She was wearing a helmet at the time.
The Lansing Schools crisis team met Monday morning to discuss procedures for grieving students.
"We've got to be strong, we've got to continue with the educational process," Gear said. "I'm sure that's what Cindy would want us to do, and cherish her in our memories."
Neighboring athletic programs are morning the loss, too. East Lansing High School basketball coach Steve Finamore said Short took good care of visiting teams.
"Cindy was always there for us," Finamore said. "Just really hands on and welcoming us with open arms."
Games this week are still scheduled, but Everett High School students say it won't be the same.
"I'm in pep band for marching band, and she's always there, and it's just going to be so different," senior Jaimie Bozack said. "I think that everybody's just kinda gonna not want to do anything. It's going to be mourning and sadness."
Counselors will be available at the school for the rest of the week.
Administration is discussing a special way to remember Short, whether through a scholarship or event.