KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – People in Knoxville and all over the world wore orange on Friday to support and pay tribute to Pat Summitt. The effort was called “Turn the World Orange for Pat Summitt” and spearheaded by the organization “Knoxville Pays it Forward.”
Staff at Parkway Cardiology Associates in Oak Ridge took part. Their support was clear as you walked through the office. Medical transcriptionist Lisa Harrell wore orange and took on the role of office DJ, playing the song “Rocky Top” over the speakers for the whole office.
“The biggest thing you can say about her is that she’s a role model. Not just for her players and her team, but for every person because of the way she lived her life. She was so honest, so pure, and there was a determination that made everyone who saw and heard her, want to be like her,” Harrell said, about what Summitt meant to her.
Staff member Joyce Weber, also wearing orange, says Pat Summitt and the Lady Vols helped her cope with her husband’s death. What she learned from Pat Summitt was determination.
“Her background, her family background. She came from a farm here in Tennessee and she left behind such a legacy. She had a small start but worked hard. One thing that impressed me is how she always made an effort to stop and talk to anyone who wanted to talk to her,” Weber said.
Josie Kelly wore purple scrubs with an orange ribbon – purple for Alzheimer’s awareness and orange for Pat Summitt. Kelly has a special connection to Summitt. Before she worked for Parkway, she delivered Summitt’s mail for several years.
“She was just so humble and sweet. She didn’t care if you were a janitor or if you were the president. She was kind no matter what,” Kelly said.
Like so many offices, everyone gathered for a group photo to remember the day.
“It shows our respect for her, all she did for the state of Tennessee, and everything she did for us as coach,” Harrell said.