Perry-Lecompton community celebrating teen leaving for Army Monday

Local News

LECOMPTON, Kan. (KSNT) – The Perry-Lecompton community is coming together to say goodbye to a teen leaving for basic training. People will be lining Elmore Street in Lecompton with signs and flags as Elyssa Paslay leaves home for the first time.

Paslay recently graduated Perry-Lecompton high school but both her prom and graduation ceremony were postponed or cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Friends and family came together to organize this parade because they wanted Paslay to feel special. She said she’s overwhelmed by the support.

“I’ve heard it’s going to be big, which is surprising, but I’m really grateful for everyone that’s coming out,” Elyssa said. “It’s sweet and it just warms my heart to know that many people are going to be there and support me through it.”

Paslay will work in helicopter repair in the Army. She said she wants to eventually become a pilot.

The enlistment process will look different for Paslay due to the pandemic. She said she will be tested and have to entire a two week quarantine before she gets to her base. She said she’ll have to do the same thing before she goes to training.

Amy Paslay, Elyssa’s mother, said it’s a tough time because she doesn’t know when she’ll be able to see her daughter again because of the pandemic.

“We can’t go to her graduation for basic,” Amy said. “We’re hoping that she can come home for Christmas. These are things that we worry about.”

Elyssa is leaving home at 11:15 a.m. Monday in Lecompton. People are asked to line up along Elmore Street by 11:00 a.m. and practice social distancing.

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