Walden follows father’s footsteps



May 13, 2015 - 12:00 AM

Shane Walden is looking forward to following the footsteps of his father, Bill Walden, an owner of Iola Pharmacy.
Though the journey to become a pharmacist is arduous, his first step is just a mile down the road from Iola High School to Allen Community College.
“I’m trying to follow in my dad’s footsteps and some other owners at the pharmacy,” Shane said. “Three of the four owners started at Allen. I plan on attending KU to finish up school.”
He wants to major in pre-pharmacy and minor in business. His brothers, Drew and Seth, also attended the University of Kansas.
His mother is Becky Walden.
During his time at IHS, Shane made his second home on the football field… or basketball court… or golf course. It depends on the season, but Shane was always involved with sports. At the same time, he was taking challenging classes such as calculus, physics and a college English class. Walden is one of 10 valedictorians, having maintained a perfect 4.0 grade point average throughout high school.
“I’ll miss [playing sports and doing school work] because it really pushed me. I really love sports, but I wanted good grades,” Shane said. “I did both because I didn’t want to sacrifice one for the other. Academics comes first, but that’s why I had to stay up late and do my homework.”
During the fall, Walden played as a wide receiver and halfback. In the winter, he was a point guard. Now, he’s on a golf team that has a good chance at vying for a state championship.
“I really enjoyed the sports teams I was on, but I’ll really miss the golf team more than anything,” Walden said. “Not because it’s golf season right now, but I have grown up with this group of guys since I was in preschool. It’s going to be hard leaving them, plus we’ve been pretty succesful as a golf team. We’re pretty close-knit.”
The golf team is a perfect 7-0 during the regular season tournament. It’s their 12th win as a team in a row — excluding a third place finish at last year’s state touranment.
“Everybody says that it’s hard to do both sports and school, while being successful in both of them,” he said. “But, really, you’ve just got to manage your time. There has been a lot of sleepless nights to stay up late and study.”
The studying has paid off, as the National Honor Society student makes his way toward graduation.
Looking to college, Walden is excited about the prospect of having more time to focus on his studies.
“I’ll have a little bit more free time,” Shane said “I’ll have more time to focus on the classes that I really need, and am going into as a major.”

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