We are pleased to announce that the first annual LOJMMMF was gifted to the Lanier High School Band in 2020 to assist students who do not have the financial resources to purchase band instruments or uniforms. It is our hope that this gift will make a difference in the lives of teenagers and young adults who have dreams and goals, and who can benefit from the knowledge that someone believes in those dreams and is cheering them on from afar.
A $2500 gift was provided to the Lanier High School Band in September 2020. Based on confirmed future donations, the same gift will be provided in years 2021-2024.
Lingiam Odems Jr, in whose honor this fund was established, is a native of Jackson, MS. Mr. Odems attended Lanier High School in 1967-1968 and was a proud member of the high school band. That band experience cemented his life-long love and appreciation for all types of music. He often credited music for keeping energy, hope, love, and determination in his life.
Though Mr. Odems left Mississippi to serve a Military career and settle in Virginia, he always felt a strong connection to his roots in Jackson. Recently, he brought his adult sons to Jackson to share his heritage and show them the “2 miles he walked” daily from his home on W Ridgeway to Lanier High School. Prior to his early passing, Mr. Odems had begun plans for retirement and was committed to reaching back to the South to work on the long-standing challenges of racial injustice, poverty, hunger, and other challenges that get in the way of promising young men and women who are working on their dreams.
Astonishing Expectations Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charity that is committed to creating a world where young people with big dreams may thrive. Our primary purpose is to raise the expectations that society has for young individuals with physical, financial or personal challenges and the expectations that those individuals have for themselves.
We hope that this award will make a difference in the lives of several students at Lanier High School and change the way that they spread their music out into the world.