merrill AOW

Jessie Mei Merrill


Jessie Mei Merrill, daughter of Steve and Nancy Merrill, is this week’s Athlete of the Week.

She is a junior at Franklin High School and a member of the Varsity Cheerleading Team. She holds the position of flyer for the team. This season, she said seeing the football team beat Centennial’s team was her biggest highlight. 

Merrill started cheerleading after retiring from gymnastics after eight years. “I was always interested in it and it looked fun,” she said. “From there on out, I’ve been in love with the sport.”

When asked what inspires her to continue training and competing she said she is motivated by her coaches, teammates and family.

Her father, Steve, is her top role model. “He is my biggest supporter and has been with me through it all,” she said. “He never misses Friday night lights.”

FHS Cheerleading Coach Shannon Freud said of Merrill, “Jessie Mei is not only an extremely talented athlete but she’s a fantastic team member. She’s always giving her best effort and does not settle on being average. She pushes herself, sometimes too hard, towards achieving personal and team goals. She represents the spirit of a Rebel on the sidelines!”

After graduating from FHS, she hopes to continue her cheer career at an SEC school. She plans to study medicine and eventually work in the healthcare industry.

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