The Bunnell City Commission last week formally recognized Kadance Nickmeyer, the Matanzas High School junior who won an essay contest sponsored by the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and the Girl Scouts’ highest award for a domestic-violence initiative she launched.
Nickmeyer was there with her mother, Tanya, but was apparently overcome by the occasion.
“Since Kadance is at a loss for words, I do have her words,” City Manager Alvin Jackson said, reading a prepared text she had written, recalling her recent opportunity with the sheriff and describing what’s ahead. “This is the beginning of my journey of life,” Jackson quoted her as saying. “The steps I am taking now are building the foundation and setting me up to help me make life choices for my future.”
The city’s recognition was for her performance in the criminal justice program at Matanzas High School, for earning the sheriff’s award and ride-along, a Girl Scout Gold Award and demonstrating “the desire to serve and give back to her community.”
Nickmeyer has a 3.8 grade point average, plays three sports (basketball, swimming, track) and is working with Teens-in-Flight’s Jack Howell to get her pilot’s license. She’s earned the Girl Scouts’ Gold Award, the organization’s top rank.
“Kadance and her mother Tanya are domestic violence survivors,” Bunnell Police Chief Dave Branon said, representing Staly (who could not attend because of illness). “That prompted Kadance to create a website to help victims of domestic violence as her Gold Award project for the Girl Scouts. The bilingual website is called thesaferoute.org and is offered in both English and Spanish.” The website offers advice on filing injunctions, explaining the intricacies of the process (with a checklist), includes a 30-minute video on dating violence she produced and hosted, and offers other resources, with a disclaimer that none of it is intended as legal advice.
“Kadance credits her success to her mom, who is battling breast cancer,” Brannon said.
The soon-to-be senior is certified scuba diver, plans to join the Air Force, become a fighter pilot (she wants to fly F-16’s) then retire after a long career and fly commercial “where she hopes get paid to see the world during her recent winter day,” Brannon said.