CORPUS CHRISTI, TX — This Friday Ray High School will be honoring a tradition that's lasted half a century, and for the ones who started it all, their Ray family pride continues to shine.
For 50 years the Tex-Anns have added spark to the Ray football halftime show.
"I remember in the fall of 1971 where Mrs. Portus recruited me and another girl to tryout for the Tex-Anns," said Christina Farrah, Ray Tex-Ann (1971-74), officer and captain.
"The Tex-Anns started when the high school was not really for having a drill team and the cool thing now is that the current student body loves the Tex-Anns," said Farrah. "We've seen that."
The Tex-Ann 50-Year Celebration Dance Team is honoring their long-standing legacy with a performance of a lifetime. Their practice and preparation brings back some special memories.
"We made our own outfits. We had seamstresses and things like that to make our uniforms, so we were really happy with what we had," said Ellen Miller Thorsen, Ray Tex-Ann (1972-75), dancer, officer and captain. "This is like what we used to do. That really brings back the memories for me too."
After all the hard work, the Tex-Anns still remember what it's like to perfect the routine.
"Rehearsing and rehearsing and rehearsing out on the field, in the gym, and sweat just dripping down my legs," said Lynette Haynes, Ray Tex-Ann (72-74), dancer. "You know we're working in the air conditioning, but it's just as hard."
Christina Farrah's dream to perform again is now a reality, but back in May 2019 she almost lost hope. Farrah was diagnosed with breast cancer, but God came to her with a vision.
"Girls from 15-years-old all the way to 68, something like that, dancing on the field," said Farrah. "That gave me hope to continue through the remainder of the chemo sessions and getting healthy again."
The Tex-Anns have a lot to be thankful for and that's why they chose the songs Come Alive and Celebration.
"Just such a great accomplishment that all of us got together and we made it through this and we're still kicking," said Sally Alumbaugh Riddle, Ray Tex-Ann (1973-76), Member, Captain and Major.
"Oh my gosh, makes me want to cry," said Farrah. "So happy, so happy to be back out on that field again."
The Ray Tex-Anns will perform a little after 6:50 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21 before Ray football kicks off against King at Buc Stadium at 7:30 p.m.