To introduce the Morey legacy, one could paraphrase the lyrics of an old Dean Martin song. “When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie … THAT’S AMORE.” The new FHS lyrics might be “When those flags fly high and cheerleaders catch your eye … THAT’S A MOREY.”
For over 40 years, there has been a Morey behind virtually every cheerleader squad, drill team, color guard, rally or spirit performance by Foothill. The Morey legacy got its start with the family matriarch, Dorothy “Dot” Morey, who taught at FHS from 1971-2006. She has had a wide and varied role with the drill team and color guard during that time span and beyond.
It was Dot who also helped create — and served as President of — the Pep and Pageantry Arts Association of Central California. This organization was created to showcase the outstanding valley talent in cheerleading, color guard, dance and drum line competitions. Dot, aka “Mama Morey”, was able to take her color guard team to the National Championships 3 times!
Dot promoted school spirit with her weekly sale of Rooter Ribbons vs. the next football opponent, and by creating her own unique player-photo pins. With her already full schedule, one might wonder how she also managed to coach the FHS swim team from 1972-74.
Enter Dot’s daughter, Jennifer Morey (West), who followed her mom’s career like a duck to water. In 1990, as sophomore at FHS, “Jen” not only marched in the color guard … she was choreographing and writing their routines! As a senior, she decided not to march in the guard so she could give cheerleading a try; but she continued to help the color guard by writing their routines. While attending college, Jen still managed to structure her time so she could return to FHS and work with the color guard. When Jen finished college, she was hired to teach English at FHS and able to assume the role as full time coach of the color guard.
Later, Jen graciously stepped aside to an advisory role in order to allow her niece, Aurielle, to realize her dream of being the head coach of the FHS color guard. Aurielle ran the program from 2012 to 2016. Besides being the granddaughter of Dot, and niece of Jen, Aurielle’s past credentials validated her choice to head the program. She first twirled a flag in elementary school as part of aunt Jen’s independent teams: Pretense, Little Intense, Intense and Intensity. She also marched 4 years in Bakersfield High’s color guard. Now Aurielle has decided to continue her dream to become an elementary school teacher and will return to college. So in 2017, Jen once again assumed the role as the drill master at FHS.
While “Mama Morey” has retired from teaching, she has never retired from helping and advising the color guard. She continues to make uniforms, flags, offer advice and attend all functions. When the FHS cheerleaders and color guard perform, you can be assured their dress, appearance, and conduct will be second to none and something we can all admire. Watching Jen conduct her pre-game inspection for uniform attire and personal appearance reminds me a lot of the ones my army drill sergeant gave me at Fort Ord. In a nut shell, the message is: “You represent FHS, so dress, look and act the part.”
Thanks to the Morey clan, the FHS color guard has a long legacy of traditions and values we should appreciate and not take for granted. In this modern era, where loyalty and tenure often find teachers and coaches leaving every few years to seek out “greener pastures”, it is refreshing to see the loyalty and commitment the Morey family has given to FHS. Over the years, no coach of any sport has spent more time preparing a team for a performance than these 3 ladies.
Foothill has been so blessed to be able to offer it’s students the best instruction and guidance in these arts, for so many years. And, as long as there is a Morey in charge, you can rest assured that this excellence will continue.
The Trojan Nation would like to take this opportunity to pay homage and say “THANK YOU” to this family for their dedication, loyalty and contributions to Foothill. Go Trojans!