Saturday’s football game marked my last first-game as the videoboard producer for Auburn Athletics. (Remember that whole thing about me quitting my dream job?) During the game, as I watched our crew at work, I was reminded of our very first meeting a few short years ago.

I was responsible for taking a group of people, mostly students who had never held a camera before, and turning them into the best video crew in the Southeastern Conference.

I didn’t really know where to start, but on the advice of my friend Andy, we began with an icebreaker. I passed around a bag of pennies and made everyone take one. Each of us had to read the year the penny was made & tell a story about something that happened in our lives that year.

One kid fell off a deck and broke his leg. Another went to a Backstreet Boys concert. We brought it full circle by talking about how each penny represented a memorable moment in that person’s life–some good, some bad.

The crew went on to establish our mission statement-

“It is the mission of the AUHD Crew to provide memorable moments to Auburn fans through a clean, professional and ever-improving game day production.”

Now, in AUHD’s 4th season, I’m confident that our crew is as good as any in the country. To this day, it’s not unusual to hear someone on the headset say “there’s a penny” when we play a chill-inducing video, replay a big hit or put a smiling kid on the big screen. It’s a joy to watch them work and I learn something from them each and every time we produce a show.

A year or so after that first meeting, I was motivated to create my own mission statement.

“Times past exist only in memories, therefore I will strive to create as many memorable moments as I can by doing things to grow myself, my future, my relationships & my faith.”

Times change and people move on, but the memories from my years as a member of the crew will be with me for a long time to come.

So here’s to pennies. Not the kind made of copper and zinc, but the kind made of adventures, experiences, family and friends; the kind you never want to lose.