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Senior Tribute

We honor the three members of the Taylor Village Tigerfish with a tribute to each below.  Thank you, swimmers, for your years of commitment and success with the Tigerfish, and best of luck as you move on to your new adventures!

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Lexi Cucchiaro

Thank you for the opportunity to honor our daughter, Lexi, as she concludes her 13th and final season of swimming for the Tigerfish.

Lexi started swimming for the Tigerfish when she was 5. Honestly, it wasn’t an easy first day. Although Lexi had been taking lessons since she was a toddler and was already a capable swimmer, she did NOT like how cold the water was. In fact, she protested so loudly that the team manager suggested we wait another year before having Lexi join the team. Boy, are we happy we didn’t listen! The swimming we’ve witnessed and the memories we’ve made since then have been simply extraordinary.

Lexi had an impact on the team from the beginning. There were many summers where she was undefeated in dual meet competition; she regularly qualified for Divisionals and Straehles; and she was named MVP for her respective age group nearly every year she was on the team. She also took on leadership roles, from working as an assistant coach to becoming the co-head coach this year. Lexi will end her Tigerfish career holding an incredible 19 individual and relay records.

Lexi’s love for swimming has extended far beyond the Tigerfish. She has competed for a variety of year-round club teams, including the Annapolis Swim Club, where she currently trains. Lexi still holds records at several of those teams, and she regularly qualified for championship-level meets, including YMCA Districts and Winterfest, the Maryland 14&U and Senior State Championships, Speedo Eastern Zone Sectionals, and the Eastern Zone Open Water Championship. One of Lexi’s favorite parts of summer swimming has been the opportunity to show younger kids how to enjoy and excel at swimming, and hopefully she has inspired some of those kids to go on to year-round swimming, too.

Even Lexi’s extracurricular activities have reflected her connections to this sport. She has taught private swimming lessons here at the pool; she was the co-captain of the Mt. Hebron High School aquatics club for the past two years; and she has been a volunteer and coach for the Howard County Special Olympics aquatics team for seven years. Last year, with the help of many family members, friends, and teammates like you, Lexi raised more than $11,000 to become one of the youngest Super Plungers in Maryland Special Olympics history, earning the privilege of jumping into the Chesapeake Bay once an hour for 24 hours in mid-January 2020.

Lexi has excelled away from the water as well. She graduated this past June from Mt. Hebron High School, where she was selected as a member of the National Honor Society, plus the National English, Social Studies, and Music honor societies. Lexi was chosen as the 2019-20 Kiwanis Teenager of the Year at the local and division levels, and she is a graduate of Howard County Leadership U, a highly selective leadership and community service program for high school juniors.

Lexi’s other main passion is music. She is a skilled trumpet player and has been first chair trumpet in multiple musical ensembles. She was named the Mt. Hebron Bands Rookie of the Year as a freshman, then she went on to lead the well-known Mt. Hebron Marching Unit, first as the Junior Assistant Drum Major two years ago and then as the Senior Drum Major this past year. She has also been a member of the Howard County High School GT Symphony Orchestra and the Howard County High School GT Band, and she was selected last year for the Maryland All State Senior Band.

Lexi will be leaving next month to head to New York State, where she will attend the University of Rochester. While at the U of R, Lexi plans to major in psychology and minor in biology on a pre-med track, while also pursuing a concentration in music from the university’s Eastman School of Music. Best of all, she will be swimming for their Division III team. Go Yellowjackets!

Lexi, you have been an inspiration to so many people in the first 18 years of your life. You’re smart, athletic, musical, and admired by everyone who witnesses your extraordinary talents. You’ve proven that you can do anything you put your mind to, and your mom and I are so excited to see what new things you’ll accomplish at the U of R, both in the pool and in the classroom. On behalf of everyone here, thank you for setting such a wonderful example for all of us to follow, best of luck in Rochester, and please come back soon. Congratulations on a long and successful career as a Tigerfish!

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Jason Meyer

Jason joined the Tigerfish when he was 7 or 8 years old. Gradually he learned all 4 strokes and had a ton of fun, but he kept getting DQ’d in the Butterfly, so we hired a swim teacher to work on that with him. Her advice – he’s just not getting it yet, but don’t worry – one day it will just click. Little did we know that shortly it would “click” and fly would become his strongest stroke by far.

As he grew older, Jason branched out, swam with the YMCA Blue Crabs for a couple years, went to Straehle twice, and was blessed to earn the AAU award as well.

Between new HOA rules, COVID, and his former swim instructor job that required him to work on Saturday mornings, it has been quite a while since he was in a race. He is proud to have been a long time member of this team and has many wonderful memories of friends he met here. His favorite accomplishment is being a Junior Coach, because he loves working with younger kids of all ages. He has already and will continue to miss the camaraderie and support that swim team brings! He will NOT miss Mom jumping up and down and screaming “Go, Jason go!” during every heat.

Jason is attending HCC in the Fall, studying Construction Management. He will be working part-time helping a local family with childcare needs, working at Ravens games, and continuing to workout at the gym and play lacrosse with buddies. He thanks all of his family and amazing group of friends for their continued love and support all these years, and to the TVT leadership for welcoming him back this one last time.

Jason, blessings to you in everything you do – there is no doubt in my mind that you will always swim through life with love, joy and perseverance. I am so very thankful that you gave us the privilege of being “swim Mom and Dad” for all these years! Good luck in everything!

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Luke Mitchell

Luke has been a member of the TVT for 10 years. We are so glad that when he was 8 years old, we decided to stop in and see what these orange and black flags and cheering was all about. 

Over the past 8 years, Luke has really excelled and specialized in distance swimming in freestyle and breaststroke. Swimming for the Retriever Aquatic Club year around, he has competed in countless championship level meets and qualified for the MD State Championships several times. Did you know that Luke can swim a mile in less than 17 minutes? (and that was pre-Covid when he was just 16 years old). 

Although he has played basketball and baseball over the years, swimming has been his true passion, a sport that he’s really dedicated his time, heart and soul to. He’s a strong competitor, but has always shown grace under pressure and overall good sportsmanship. I really love that about him. 

Luke has very much enjoyed being a swim coach here. We hope that he has served all of you Tigerfish well. We thank the TVT family for giving us so many fun Saturday morning memories. Next month Luke will be attending the University of South Carolina majoring in Business. But before then, you can catch him working at Soft Stuff ice cream in Ellicott City. 

Congratulations, Luke! As you swim this final event, remember 2 very important things: 1) don’t forget a 2 hand touch, and 2) Know that we will always cheer for you, no matter what.

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