Continuing A Legacy

Senior Harley Duffield wants to carry on a legacy that started with her sister, Casey, who passed away in 2015.


Courtesy of Harley Duffield

Harley Duffield (right) was inspired by her sister to go into the medical field.

McKenna Casey, Editor-in-Chief

Losing a loved one can affect people differently. For one of Windsor’s seniors, it inspired her career path. 

Harley Duffield is a senior at Windsor High School and currently enrolled in the Jefferson College nursing program to help kickstart her into the world of medicine. After she completes the program, she will be a certified nursing assistant and plans on climbing the ladder from there. 

“I’m studying for my CNA right now, which is a certified nursing assistant and then I’ll go up to RN, which is a registered nurse, and then I can get my master’s and bachelor’s and that’ll help me,” Duffield said. 

Duffield plans to attend MidAmerican Nazarene University, which is located a few miles south of Kansas City, Kansas. She first visited when her sister toured the campus and was overwhelmed with how welcoming the community was. 

Duffield said, “My sister went there when I was in like fifth grade. I think we took her there and I got shown around the whole entire school when we took her. Ever since then, I’ve always wanted to go (the school) and a few of her friends went there with the nursing program.”

Her sister, Cassandra “Casey” Duffield, graduated from the Christian university one year before she passed away from esophageal cancer. Casey left a large impact on the small community (less than 2,000 students) as a pastor graduate and Harley wants to continue the family legacy in her memory. 

“The impact she made, even though you’re not supposed to see yourself as the same as people and live up to them, but my sister was amazing and she’s always been my role model from the beginning. We were best friends and I’ve always wanted to grow up to be like her my whole life,” Duffield said. “And so going to that college was a big step of being like her because she’s the first one that’s ever moved away for college and graduated from college, so if I can do that, that would be like the biggest thing for me because I would be just like my sister and how I’ve always wanted to be.”

Casey left a big impact on every life she touched, whether it be in the local church program at MNU or her inspiration over Harley, she always left a part of herself there. 

For Harley, family and religion are the most important parts of her life. She recalls feeling hopeless when her sister was sick, having to let all those other people take care of her and not being able to help as well as struggling in her faith during this difficult time. Casey had always been there for Harley, but when she was in the hospital, Harley felt useless. She became passionate about wanting to learn how to help people who were also in this life-altering state of hospitalization, to ease others’ pain. 

Duffield said, “I wanted to learn how to be able to help her and help other people if they got sick. I want to be able to help my family and not having to sit back and see other people that we have no idea of their background or anything or know them at all and just had to watch them help her. I felt like I was useless because I can help my big sister who’s always been there for me.”

Harley mentioned how this passion comes from a place of wanting to help other people like her sister.  The university was very welcoming to her as a fifth-grader and even more now as an applicant. Harley has big plans for her future while being able to stay connected to something she holds dear, family.

“(Family) means the world to me. It’s my shelter, my life, how I grew up. It’s where I go if I need something, like if I need love or comfort, I go to my family. Family is everything to me. It always has been and always will be,” Duffield said.