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Local girls earn homecoming titles at MC, Ole Miss

Best friends often share in common experiences, but collegestudents Kathleen Valentine and Betsy Boerner have some uniquesimilarities.

After growing up together in Brookhaven, the two separatedgeographically when they moved off to different colleges –Valentine to the University of Mississippi and Boerner toMississippi College.

While they have kept in contact about their many similarexperiences in college, this year they will share a hugeaccomplishment together: being homecoming queens at seniorcolleges.

“Neither one of us can believe it,” said Boerner. “It was reallyneat when were were both on the homecoming court our senior year atBrookhaven High School, but now to both be homecoming queens isunreal.”

She added that the uniqueness of the situation is still soakingin with both, who will be honored at their homecomingsSaturday.

“We had talked the weekend before elections, when we were bothnominated, and we thought it was so funny. We never imagined we’dboth win,” said Boerner.

They did though, and now the only sad part about their big dayis that they will not be able to share it together.

“We won’t get to see each other, but I know we will be thinkingabout each other all day,” Valentine said.

Homecoming festivities are scheduled for all weekend, butValentine and Boerner will be presented at halftime of thehomecoming football games. The University of Mississippi game willbegin at 1 p.m., and the Mississippi College game begins at 6p.m.

Both girls are nervous about the moment when they will step infront of the large football crowds at their schools, wishing theycould have their friend at the event to calm nerves.

Valentine said it will seem strange not to share in her bestfriend’s big day as homecoming queen at Mississippi College or haveBoerner by her side at Ole Miss.

“We’ve grown up together. We’ve done everything together, fromdance recitals to being in clubs together,” she said.

She and Boerner have continued to stay active, participating inmany similar things, such as honor societies and sororities, at thecollege level. They often talk on the phone about their numerousactivities.

The girls realize that in May they will continue to go indifferent directions as Boerner graduates with an art educationdegree and Valentine receives a journalism-public relationsdegree.

Boerner, the daughter of Bill and Merrie Boerner, believes thetwo will never lose touch as they continue to grow.

She plans to have Valentine, the daughter of Dennis and AmyValentine, by her side at another big event in her life next summerwhen she is married.

“She’s going to be my maid of honor, and her mother iscoordinating my wedding,” Boerner said.

The girls have confidence that even as they embark on differentpaths, their similarities will still keep them close.

They also know other close friends they have made in collegewill stay with them through the years.

Many have already showed Boerner and Valentine they are lovedand honored by nominating them for homecoming queen.

“It’s unbelievable to know you have 200 girls supporting you,”Valentine said of her sorority, which nominated her.

Valentine and Boerner know that when all else fails, though,they will have and have always had each other.