COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – Losing their son, Park, has brought Dean and Gail Stevens unspeakable pain, but the love and support they have received from the Ole Miss family has given them strength and increased their faith. They say the healing process started at Park’s service with heartfelt words from head coach Hugh Freeze.
Gail Stevens says, “For Coach Freeze to come to take the time to do it, and oh by the way, he had an aunt that had died and her funeral was that same day.”
The Stevens say they have also come to rely on the players for strength. “We have a whole lot of new sons. They all call me Mom,” says Stevens.
Dean Stevens says he began posting daily messages on Facebook to help him heal. He says, “I got so many responses from people that day that responded back to me saying, ‘We’ve been through what you’ve been through. We feel your pain.’”
In addition to setting up the Park Stevens Memorial Scholarship Fund through the University of Mississippi Foundation, the Stevens have started a business in their son’s memory.
Park Place Salon and Boutique is open in downtown Columbus.