A bittersweet ceremony at Dyess Elementary Wednesday morning, as Jarrett Mantanona's classmates sang the 8-year-old's favorite song during a dedication ceremony in his honor.
With lyrics such as "I don't do drugs, I don't do cigarettes, I don't do alcohol, I'm too smart to start," it's a melody that has a much deeper meaning than these fourth-graders can truly comprehend.
Mantanona was killed in May of 2011, when a drunk teenager slammed into the family's car as they headed to Sea World.
Now a year and a half later, an engraved stone stands where the second-grader used to play.
Though the wounds are still raw and the healing continues, Michelle Mantanona explains her hope for the monument to her son.
"We hope it reminds the kids early on what happens when you make bad choices. And hopefully, these kids grow up to be smarter for it," she said.
Michelle said her autistic 8-year-old son was an avid rock collector, and would smile to see the stone standing in his honor.
Michael Newton, who has lost many students during his decades as Principal at Dyess Elementary, said Jarrett's passing was one that hit the hardest, because of the child's unique spark.
"During recess, he seldom played, but spent his time scavenging and picking up rocks and anything else he could find, then he'd run back and show his teachers," Newton remembered.
Newton said he hopes the rock will keep Jarrett's memory alive for decades to come.
"Even in fifty years from now, we hope if someone just stands here and wonders what that's about, that has meaning in itself, because Jarrett was full of wonder," he explained.
The rock was donated by Big Country Stone and was engraved on site with Jarrett's name.
A tribute to a boy who touched so many lives, and a stepping stone for Jarrett's family and friends to heal.