And the Ride with Pirate Pride winner is…Molly Dessauer!

May 8, 2023

Molly stands next to her new car with Principal Troy Moran, the Pirate mascot, Det. Sgt. Kevin Skipski and Hart Police Chief Juan Salazar.

And the Ride with Pirate Pride winner is…Molly Dessauer!

Pirate News is a presentation of Hart Public Schools in partnership with Oceana County Press. 

By Allison Scarbrough, Editor

HART — Hart High School junior Molly Dessauer was the lucky winner of a 2011 Ford Fiesta valued at $7,000 during the Ride with Pirate Pride assembly Monday, May 8. 

Molly was one of over 200 Hart High School students who signed a pledge to abstain from unhealthy and unsafe behaviors, like drinking alcohol, using drugs, drinking and driving and distracted driving, to not only make safe and healthy lifestyle decisions but also for a chance to win the car.

Ten finalists each selected an envelope that contained a key, and Molly picked the right envelope containing the key that started the car.

Molly is all smiles when her key starts the car.

Molly said she will use the car to get back and forth to school, sports practices and work. She also plans to use the car to drive her siblings around.

The car was donated by John Heykoop of Eagle Towing. 

“John went a step further and paid all the taxes and registration,” said Hart High School Principal Troy Moran. Steve’s Auto & Truck of Hart donated over $1,000 worth of detailing work to spruce up the ride, said Det. Sgt. Kevin Skipski of the Hart Police Department. Skipski chipped in his own money for detailing, too. Mileage on the car is 200,000, he said.

Participating students also won many other prizes donated by local businesses. Freshman Caleb Ackley won the second-place prize of a kayak donated by Waterdog Outfitters in Montague. “I like to kayak fish,” said Caleb.

Moran said the program is modeled after the Muskegon County program, which he was involved in when he was principal at Montague High School. After taking the job in Hart, the principal soon connected with Det. Sgt. Skipski, to get the program moving in Hart.

HHS Principal Troy Moran addresses the students during Monday’s assembly.

“It’s a great opportunity for the school to connect with the community; the community to connect with the school; and the school to connect with law enforcement,” said Moran. “The three entities are working together to build better people.

“We really want to celebrate the students who are doing what we ask them to do — not only in the school but outside in the community. The program not only incentivizes students to do the right thing, but also rewards students who are already doing the right thing.”

There are 15 positive behaviors that the students are pledging to maintain. Those who abided by their promise were put into a drawing to select 10 finalists. 

The plan is to continue the Ride with Pride program annually.

“All the community people coming together to make this thing happen has been pretty amazing,” said Skipski.

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