Heather was born on April 9, 1992. She was a Santa Fe High School student and volleyball player. On September 9, 2008 Heather Harkness died from complications that arose during appendectomy surgery. The first annual Heather Harkness Memorial Volleyball Tournament was held 5 years ago, just three short weeks after Heather’s passing. Now it has grown to become not only the largest recreational tournament in the state. With over 60 teams that participated, and 300 sponsors that donated to our cause, last year was the most successful year yet. Last year was also the debut of the 1st annual Heather’s Hope Silent Auction, a now separate event from the tournament.
Both of these events are successful because of the hard work and dedication of Santa Fe DECA students and friends. Every year the tournament grows, surprising since the farther away we get from her passing the fewer students knew Heather. But, because of her legacy and this tournament, they can get to know her. Students produce this tournament not only to remember who she was and honor her, but to celebrate her life as she would want, with volleyball, music, and a good time!
About Heather Harkness Memorial Events
In September of 2008 after losing Heather Harkness, an avid volleyball player and active DECA member, the Santa Fe DECA chapter and Varsity Volleyball team collaborated to create the Heather Harkness Memorial Volleyball Tournament. Heather was a junior at Edmond Santa Fe High School. She served as the DECA Historian as well as a defensive specialist starter for varsity volleyball. Heather was an active member of the Saint Monica Youth Group where she attended Catholic Heart Work Camp for two consecutive summers. These two years at Catholic Heart Work Camp greatly impacted Heather’s life and helped sculpt her as a person to become a role model to those around her.
Heather balanced her commitment to volleyball as well as her involvement with school and church projects with spending time with the ones she loved. She had a gift of lifting your spirits, lending a helping hand or sharing her belief in you. Heather will always be remembered by how she lived her life with joy, happiness, compassion, generosity and energy that was hard to match. For those of us left behind, we take time during this tournament to celebrate her life just like we know she would want it: with music, laughter, fun, friendship.
Just like Heather said, let’s
“Play hard and win.”