Thompson’s Classmates Help Keep Memory Alive Each Year


Photo submitted

Halle Thompson's former Redemptorist Catholic School classmates meet prior to their senior year to take a picture.

Madison Navarre, Assistant Copy Editor

Crowley High seniors Alyxander Duhon, Caroline Kelley, Christian Stafford, Hannah Cormier, and Payton Breaux were impacted when a tragic accident occurred four years ago on March 6, 2015, when they were attending Redemptorist Catholic School as eighth graders.

A classmate of theirs at the time, Halle Makay Thompson, was killed in the accident, while Crowley High junior Brooke Habetz was severely injured.

Habetz was 16 years old when the accident occurred and was driving the vehicle. Her current diagnosis is a traumatic brain injury.  According to Jamie Habetz, Brooke’s mom, “Brooke needs daily nursing assistance. She loves hanging out with her family, shopping and art classes. She has a great sense of humor, making people laugh, loves everyone, and most of all Jesus. Brooke wants everyone to know she still loves them.”

At the time, the RCS students were 13-14 years old, and some didn’t understand what was happening or why it happened to their classmate.

‘When the accident happened, I was empty, confused, lost, hurt. It did not feel real. In a way, I did understand but then again, I didn’t. I didn’t understand why God had taken her away from us,” said Kelley.

Breaux had similar feelings.  “I understood that she had gotten in a really bad accident, but I could not wrap my head around that she was gone, so much that me and my mother sat in the hospital parking lot for about an hour or so.”

Duhon said, “I was kind of in shock. I didn’t really understand, and it didn’t really hit me until the funeral.”

Kelley, who cheered and played volleyball with Thompson, recalled some of her favorite memories while they attended RCS.  “There are so many. Rides to volleyball tournaments, sleepovers, riding the four-wheeler at her old house, cheer practice, (and) sharing bags of whales every day at school.”

The eighth grade class thinks that the accident brought all of them together.  “I think the accident made us all closer because we realized how short life can be,” explained Duhon.

“After the accident, the eighth grade class at Redemptorist put their differences aside and started to treat each other like family; we all finally realized that tomorrow is not promised,” stated Breaux.

Breaux said Thompson was one of her closest friends at Redemptorist.  “She always was a great person to talk to and she was just a happy person all around.”

Breaux and Thompson played volleyball together, and they were also both in the Beta Club.  “At recess almost every day, we would either stay in the classroom and goof off with our teacher (Tiffany Shreve), play four square, or wall ball,” recalled Breaux.  “We went on many field trips throughout the years and also went to Beta convention together.” The two also had many sleepovers and went mud riding in Thompson’s backyard.

Many of these students still to this day do things to keep her memory alive. “As an eighth grade class, we go eat out at El Dorado’s (for her birthday on May 14) because that was her favorite place to eat,” mentioned Breaux.  Kelley also mentioned that on March 6 the classmates go to Redemptorist to say a rosary, visit her grave, and go eat at El Dorado’s.

Not only does her RCS classmates contribute in helping keep her memory alive, Redemptorist and St. Michael Elementary School also helped keep Thompson’s memory alive. St. Michael donated a statue for her.  “They have a statue for Halle on the patio. There are pictures of her everywhere. Her volleyball jersey is hanging in the gym for her, and they retired the number 26,” said Kelley.

Many of the students who were affected by this accident say that it still has an effect on them to this day, and some even have their own individual ways to keep her memory alive.  Cormier, who cheered and played volleyball with Thompson at Redemptorist, wore number 26 at Crowley High School in memory of Thompson. “My senior ring has her birthstone and her initials engraved in it.”

Christian Stafford added, “I put HMT on the inside of my hat and on my tape before every baseball game.”  “I have a bracelet with her name on it that I wear when I play baseball.”, stated Duhon.

Breaux also said, “I write ‘HMT’ on my wrist for the majority of our softball games. I put a patch on my letterman in her memory, and I also put her (initials) on the inside of my senior ring.”

Breaux and Kelley do not think it will be harder to keep Thompson’s memory alive with Redemptorist closing.  “I honestly don’t think so because it’s just the school that we all went to. Whether the school closes or stays open, she will always be our friend, and I personally, will keep her memory alive.”  Kelley said, “Yes, it is where we have the most memories with her, but Halle was the most vibrant, radiant, and brightest person. There is a way that you wouldn’t be able to keep her memory alive. She was the most lively person.”