Going to school with your sibling is very special. In the Cincinnati area, most students who attend single sex high schools may never get to experience this outside of grade school. But for siblings TJ ’20 and Mary Kate (MK) ’19, it has been a reality that will come to an end after this school year. “I was really happy when TJ chose Roger Bacon. I get to see him in the hallways, we drive to school together every day and talk about our shared experiences. Even if I do stay close (for college), it will be tough to not see him every day.”
The DeWees siblings are not just close in age (15 months apart) but also similar in their interests. Both MK and TJ are Assisi Scholars, members of the volleyball programs, members of Community Outreach and both traveled this past summer on mission trips. Mary Kate went to Jamaica, while TJ joined fellow Spartans to help the St. Bernard Project in New Orleans. When asked to reflect on New Orleans, TJ said, “It was extremely hot, but lots of fun. We explored Bourbon Street, which was eye-opening. Most of our time we worked on a house in the 9th ward -- talk about really eye-opening.” This was TJ’s first experience on a mission trip, “I would do it again, and I would like to go back to New Orleans. Hurricane Katrina was such a big tragedy for these people; you can still drive around and see nothing. It is just crazy that this is so close to home and these people are still struggling after many years.” Mary Kate’s experience in Jamaica was also eye-opening, but in her own way. “Jamaica was definitely the highlight of my summer. I did things that were out of the box for me for sure. We went cliff jumping and we rode in trucks with Fr. Jim where you could see the ground beneath you. My parents would have definitely frowned on that in a situation at home. It was just such a different culture, but I embraced it. The food was amazing and the people were incredible -- it was an experience I will never forget.”
“TJ and Mary Kate both exemplify our Franciscan values. Joyful and Serving are the two that I resonate with them of the 16 values. Both of them are extremely personable as they are always willing to chat and always do it with a smile on their face. They are always willing to help out in any way possible."
Brandon Spaeth '11, Assistant Athletic Director
Mrs. Karle has had the opportunity to teach both TJ and MK, she recognizes their caring spirit and willingness to work hard. “MK and TJ are amazing kids. Not only are they incredibly hard-working and driven, but they are kind and good natured as well. I don’t think I have ever seen Mary Kate around (school, the volleyball court, etc.) without a smile on her face. As for TJ, you can’t walk by him without hearing him greet you, wish you well and put a smile on your face. They are all around fantastic kids. I miss having them every day in English!”
When asked to describe each other, Mary Kate laughed and pondered for a second, finally saying, “He is the other half of me. He is super smart, reserved, loyal – oh and I can’t forget he is witty!” TJ responded with, “MK is creative, outgoing and just like she said the other half of me. We really are each other’s best friends.”
What a wonderful way to experience high school, with your sibling and best friend by your side. The advantages of Roger Bacon are endless especially that brothers and sisters can be a Spartan
Roger Bacon is made up of many faces, different faces. We hope to showcase a wide range of our Spartans as possible. If you would like to nominate a Spartan, past or present, to be featured as a Face of RB please click here