Kevin is a walking paradox. Many may wonder what this means. Simply put, Kevin is a Christian. He is a metalhead and has a definite punk aesthetic. He tries to be friendly and kind, but also realizes he can come off as intimidating on initial impressions. All of these statements can be contradictory, but somehow he makes them work. For those who say that metal is a non-Christian style of music, Kevin merely says to look up the lyrics to Saving Grace’s song Shekinah and report back to him. If those lyrics don’t remind that person of Chris Tomlin or Hillsong, he doesn’t know what to say. Kevin loves the metal genre, but he does realize that the screaming and loud guitars can make the genre unpleasant to some ears and maybe even scary to others. But for him? He loves the screaming vocals. It’s the purest expression of human emotions. The screams in metal remind him of all the times he’s ever screamed, either in excitement, anger, frustration, or joy. Every time he’s ever screamed, truly screamed, it has been during a feeling of intense emotion. Metal helps capture those emotions for him, emotions he may not fully be able to recognize and deal with on his own, but the music of metal makes it so.
Kevin strives for individuality and independence, noted by his constantly changing hair color and hair style. This independent and individualistic nature comes from his time as a cancer patient. In 2013, he was bedridden with osteosarcoma, bone cancer in the words of non-doctors. It was a jarring experience for a naturally athletic eleven-year-old, resulting in the replacement of his femur and knee with titanium, but it has definitely shaped him into the man he is today. A year after diagnosis, he was already back on the baseball field, completely recovered. He played football a few months later and basketball a few months after that. Without question, sports is his passion. It’s the most important thing in his life behind his faith and his family. Sports was his main motivation to fight through physical therapy and work his leg and helped him to have a specific goal in mind to stay motivated for. All through high school, he was known as the best defensive lineman in his football league, racking up thirty sacks in his senior season.
TPS has been a great experience for him. He’s met many friends, some he even considers family, and some he knows will forever have an influence on his life. Having done TPS for six years, Kevin can say that he’s experienced a wide variety of classes and teachers, including choosing Arabic as his high school language. A word of advice to the non-high schoolers who need to decide which language they want to take: try out Arabic. You won’t regret it and your friends will be incredibly impressed if you can speak a language they cannot learn in their high schools.
Possibly some of Kevin’s greatest experiences occurred at TPS Summer Camp. Finally being able to meet his friends in person was one of the greatest experiences of his life. Running around in the sun, playing all sorts of games, sitting in chapel, spending time in God’s Word with his best friends, these are memories he’ll never forget. He went to TPS Camp four straight years and is looking forward to graduating with TPS, once everything going on is figured out.
Currently, Kevin works in a local cafe as a barista, serving coffee to the people around his city. It is a fun job and he’s been working there for almost three years. As a barista, he can say that his favorite go-to coffee drink is, without question, an Irish Cream Latte. He highly suggests it. Another coffee drink that is fun in the summer time is the Caffe Affogato. For all the ice cream lovers out there, the Affogato is a scoop of vanilla ice cream covered in a shot of hot espresso. Kevin loves it for the contrast between hot and cold and the second contrast of strong coffee and sweet vanilla. He’s blessed to have worked in this coffee shop and loves it with all his heart, even if some of the customers get a little crazy. Speaking of which, as a general PSA, Kevin would like everyone to know that if an item isn’t on the menu, don’t order it. Baristas get stressed, just like everyone else, and ordering drinks that they don’t serve or know how to make does not help their stress levels.
Kevin is currently planning on going to the local junior college for the next couple years to figure out exactly what he wants to do, as well as get some general education credits out of the way. He has many options in his head for a career including history teacher, sports journalist, and physical therapist. However, none of these careers have any sort of commonality between them, which makes choosing exactly what he wants to do very difficult. Staying local though will be nice, as he can help his siblings as they go through middle school and he can continue working at his beloved cafe.
When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I loved sports and still do. All through elementary school, all I wanted was to play in the NFL. Football is a huge passion of mine and I can go on rants about plays and positions all day long. On the football field, all I feel is peace, which is weird to say, but it’s true. Every problem I have goes out the window and I just think of the man in front of me, the grass, the ball, and how hard I can hit whoever has the ball.
Favorite Bible Verse:
“But I have trusted in Your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.” Psalm 13:5. Psalm 13, as a whole, is my favorite Psalm in the Bible, but I didn’t think I should post the whole thing here. In the Psalm, David spends the first four verses asking God questions like “Why did You abandon me?” “Why do I feel alone?” “Are You gonna let my enemies defeat me?” All questions that we’ve all had at some point in our lives. But he ends the Psalm with verses 5 and 6, basically saying, despite all my questions, I am still going to worship You and remember that You are good, through it all. It’s a powerful reminder that’s helped me a lot through high school.
My personal motto is “Live Life Kamikaze.” As most of y’all know, the kamikaze pilots were Japanese pilots during World War II who would purposely crash their planes during raids and stuff to create the most damage to their enemies. While that specific example isn’t the best, to me, their bravery is something to be admired. Kamikaze pilots were willing to go into battle and die for the country and for their emperor. To me, living life kamikaze means that I am willing to fight and die for those I love and for the causes I believe in, all in service of my emperor: Jesus Christ. Living Kamikaze means to not be afraid and to remember that, after this life, there’s eternity with him, and if I die in a terrible way to get there, the joy I experience on the other side will far outweigh the pain felt here. Stay Kamikaze, y’all.