Family, politicians inspire Conway to dream for office


IMAGE / Connor Earegood

Junior Jon Conway is passionate about politics, guaranteeing voters will see his name on a ballot.

It isn’t uncommon to hear junior Jon Conway, 16, sharing his opinions on politics. After all, he wants to pursue a career in the field.

His passion for policy grew from his family.

“My grandfather used to talk politics with me when I was younger,” Conway said. “He explained to me how people could make a real difference as one but also how corruption was rampant among legislators and needed to be stopped. It really made me want to help people.”

His outgoing presence gives him control of a room and lightens even the heaviest atmospheres. Conway is quick with a joke and prides himself on his humor.

When he isn’t working toward being a future policymaker, Conway enjoys playing the trumpet in Kearsley’s marching and symphonic bands.

He also loves watching television and hanging out with his friends, including juniors Vincent Zamora, Laura Kendrick, and Cole Zemore.

Knowing Zamora since elementary school, Conway said he is one of his closest friends.

“If I had to choose one person as a best friend, it would have to be Vincent, but Cole and Laura are a close second,” Conway said. “It’s really only Vincent because I’ve known him the longest and he can make me laugh the hardest.”

Zamora feels Conway is interesting for his ability to connect with people.

He is just a charismatic person who is capable of greatness.”

— Vincent Zamora, junior

“He is very outspoken and his opinions are ones that are unique,” Zamora said. “He is just a charismatic person who is capable of greatness.”

Mr. Andy Nester, political science teacher, thinks Conway’s interest in politics and dedication will help him to become a politician.

“He clearly enjoys the daily taglines of multiple news sources,” Nester said. “I can already tell his interest would cause him to be given many responsibilities (in politics) that could move him toward a career.”

He lives with his sister, sophomore Shelby Conway, and his mother, Ms. Jennifer Carter.

His father passed away when he was 6 years old, and Conway said his death has led to him being affected less by pain.

“My dad’s death really introduced me to grief and pain when I was young,” Conway said, “so much so that I don’t really get sad about anything.”

Conway said this led to a comfort with pain that causes him to make jokes about his situation that others find less than tasteful.

“I’m kind of immune to it, and sometimes that gets me into trouble when people think I’m being insensitive or when I crack a joke during a serious conversation,” Conway said. “I know I shouldn’t, but I just can’t help it. Nothing can compare to the loss of a parent, especially when you barely got to know them.”

His experiences made him more independent.

“My father’s death has made me into the man I am,” Conway said. “Without my father, I didn’t have a man that could teach me things. I had to do it myself. I taught myself about tools and cars, how to shave, and how to be a genuinely good man.”

His self-reliance has also given him a do-it-yourself attitude.

“I think that really describes my mindset and actions,” Conway said. “I’m not going to wait for someone to do something. I’m going to do it myself.”

I have my band family, a group of people who, had we not been in band together, I never would’ve clicked with.”

— Jon Conway, junior

Conway finds support in his family and his fellow band members.

“I have my band family, a group of people who, had we not been in band together, I never would’ve clicked with,” Conway said. “My band family supports me in pretty much all of my adventures, and I can agree on political ideologies with them and I can just hang out with them doing nothing.”

An ardent fan of Robert Kennedy, Conway feels the policymaker was an influential voice for the Democratic Party.

“He’s just so inspirational to me because of his dedication to the poor,” Conway said. “He shouldn’t have cared. He was rich and grew up rich, yet he still cared about those who weren’t as lucky.”

The politician’s significance in civil rights and society was another aspect that drew Conway’s attention.

“If you look at his funeral procession, he made a real impact,” Conway said. “He was probably one of the last politicians to do so.”

Conway’s life goals are simple, revolving around policy making and education.

“I’d like to get a degree in political science and teaching,” Conway said. “Maybe, later on, I’ll get a law degree, but my entire life’s goal is to run for elected office.”

Conway is confident in his political future.

“I don’t know when or for what office, but I can guarantee that you’ll see my name on the ballot.”