A letter to the fans from Jami Lanz

March 6, 2009

A Letter to the Fans:
To the Fans of Beaver Nation,

WOW, I really don't know where to start. There are four years worth of thank yous to say. First off, I want to say thank you to all of Beaver Nation for supporting the gymnastics team every Friday night. You all are what make the lights shine down on what is truly legendary Gill Coliseum. Every Friday night, I look forward to competing in front of the best fans in the Pac-10 and on the West Coast. There is nothing like performing for Beaver Nation, it's almost as if magic happens when we are under the lights. Nobody understands how amazing it is to represent our school as a Beaver until you have experienced it and live it.

When I first walked in as a freshman I had no idea what would lie ahead of me. Come to find out it wasn't all glitter and glam with ribbons and bows, it was going to take some very hard work. I had no idea that I would go on to become Pac-10 co-Freshman of the Year, OSU's Gymnast of the Year, Pac-10 Gymnast of the Week, Pac-10 beam champion, or an All-American for that matter. I didn't know that we would qualify to NCAA's despite being third seed, or win a West Regional Championship at home, in front of our own crowd. Lucky for me I have had the opportunity to share these accomplishments, adventures, and memories with teammates that will be friends forever. Every year the team changes, gymnasts have come and gone to create new teams and to begin new chapters of their lives, this is a day I never thought would come. Though I will never forget the tears of joy, tears of frustration and pain, or the days we all laugh until our faces hurt. These are unforgettable memories.

Through my journey here, I now know that I have grown in more ways than one. I'm not only a better gymnast, but I'm a better person and teammate. I certainly didn't get here all on my own hard work. There have been many coaches that have put their time and faith in me knowing that I could someday make it. I want to say a big thank you to Tanya and Michael Chaplin for putting their faith in me and my hard work. They have taught me so much about being a better gymnast, leader, teammate and a better student. The lessons they have taught me will carry me through the next chapter of my life. I also want to say thank you to my parents and family who spent countless hours driving me to and from practices and competitions, not to mention emptying their wallets. Mom and Dad, you are my biggest fans, my strength and my rock, I couldn't have done it without you. Last but not least to my Grams and Gramps, you are the best grandparents anyone could ask for, you have been to almost every meet and still Grandpa has never failed to forget to say 'Jami, take no prisoners' before every floor routine. I'm sure there have been many ears around you ringing from your loud voice, but even if I don't always hear it I know is being yelled somewhere in the stadium, and it makes me sad knowing that there will be a last time it will be said.

Once again, THANK YOU to all my friends, family, and the fans of Beaver Nation, I hope to make my last home meet something magical for everyone. This meet will be a celebration of a great career being a Beaver, a celebration of the most memorable experience of my life, and a celebration of the journey that lies ahead for me and I'm so grateful that you all are here to share that with me. I'm proud to say, I am forever a Beaver Believer and will always bleed Orange and Black!

Go Beavers!

Jami Lanz

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