Nonprofit that helps families who lost a loved one too soon features McGregor teen in new documentary

Published: Feb. 17, 2023 at 4:17 PM CST
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - A local nonprofit seeking to provide hope to those who have lost someone too soon debuted its second documentary, and this one focused on the life of a popular teenager who died following a car accident in 2020 over Christmas break.

Archway of Hope produced the documentary about Cordelia Sloan, a 16-year-old McGregor High School junior remembered as a “ray of sunshine” and “a magnet for people.”

Cordelia was a school cheerleader, athletic manager, powerlifter, and a member of both the PALs program and the Interact Club at school.

She was also very involved at her church, where she had just attended and sat on the same pew with her family hours before she was hit by a vehicle at an intersection while traveling alone in Coryell County.

Throughout the documentary, friends and family speak of Cordelia as a young vivacious teen who was a friend to everyone.

She was crowned Miss McGregor Teen in September 2019.

Cassie Thomas was a friend of Cordelia’s who helped organize the pageants and events.

She said Cordelia wore the crown so well.

“She loved it, but she loved even more, telling them ‘you can do this, too,” Thomas said. “She always had that admiration for the little kids who were kind of shy but really wanted a photo and she’d stop every time and take a picture with every one of them even if it meant she was running late.”

More than 150 people turned out at The Exchange Event Center in McGregor on Wednesday night to watch the film.

Those in attendance included friends, community leaders, former classmates, teachers and family.

Cordelia’s immediate family, including her three siblings; her mother, Carrie, a local school librarian; and her father, Terry, the CEO of Rocket Federal Credit Union in McGregor, sat front and center as the one-hour production was played on a large screen.

Terry told KWTX he was hopeful sharing Cordelia’s story and how his family has continued to live would help others survive.

“There were two reasons for why the video was made,” Terry said. “One it was for the family. It’s a wonderful keepsake for us. For generations to come, people will learn about Cordelia, but more importantly, we were able to tell our story, and the aftermath, and to bring hope to people, hopefully, that go through something like this. They can see that, eventually, it will get better.”

Terry said talking about Cordelia comes easy to family and sitting down for interviews related to her wasn’t as difficult as he imagined.

“Not really, we love talking about Cordelia,” he said.

You can watch Cordelia’s film at or on YouTube at Archway of Hope - YouTube.

You can also find the first documentary from Archway of Hope, which features the story of 15-year-old Rhett Hering, of McGregor, who died in an UTV accident in his driveway in 2015.

Archway of Hope has several other documentaries related to early loss in development.