MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

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February 16, 2007

Rougher basketball royalty crowned

Homecoming queen praises mother’s sacrifices

By Cathy Spaulding

Phoenix Staff Writer



Of all the people who prepared for Friday morning’s Muskogee High School basketball homecoming queen coronation, probably none had to hustle like Sheri Mitchum, the queen’s mother.

She said she had just gotten off a 12-hour shift at Georgia-Pacific at 7 that morning when she had to get everyone ready. Not only did she have to prepare her daughter, Sarita Mitchum, for the coronation, she also had to wake up the 5-year-old crown bearer, her son, Kentrell Mitchum.

The proud mother was all smiles as she watched Sarita glide across the basketball court Friday morning, escorted by Darnell Johnson. Both the queen and her escort wore white.

Sarita said she, too, was proud.

“She helped me a lot,” the queen said about her mother. “And I appreciate the way she sacrificed her sleep time to help me.”

Sarita said she found the whole coronation morning “overwhelming.”

“But then, I knew it would hit me harder this morning than any time this week,” she said.

And what a hectic, yet glorious morning it was.

As the MHS band played “On, Muskogee” and other fight songs before the event, science teacher and coronation coordinator Michele Hofschulte darted back and forth from where the attendants were getting ready and where the escorts were getting ready.

As they lined up by a dressing room door, the attendants became a rainbow of gowns: Auburn, light purple, red, black and white.

“The one in purple is mine,” Stephanie Brown said as she shot a picture of the attendants. Brown’s daughter was sophomore attendant Lindsey Brown, who wore a sleek lavender gown.

As he waited for his cue to walk across the court, Kentrell stood straight and rigid, clutching the white pillow that had his big sister’s crown. He, too, wore a white tuxedo with white bow tie.

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