Military Moves: Sophia Best Makes the Most of her Life as a Warrior 


Trinitii Baggett

Best In Class: The daughter of military parents, North Atlanta senior Sophia Best is making the most of her years as a Warrior. Hers has been a life of adjustments as she’s followed the moves of her parents martial careers.

For North Atlanta senior Sophia Best, being part of a military family means her high school experience has been anything but traditional. Despite this, moving to North Atlanta has made making new friends easier after years of yearning for social interactions. This is the positive side of the difficult process of finding her pathway at a new school with more than 2,200 students. There are many students who have the opportunity to attend one high school for all four years without any interference. However, Sophia’s perspective is unique, as her vast experiences from different places have opened her eyes to even more diversity. 

Her dad is a lieutenant colonel in the military and he has been in the U.S. Army for 25 years. He is currently not enlisted and has the opportunity to retire, alleviating any anxiety or instability her future may bring. In addition, her mom was a corporal, E4 in the Army as well and served for one enlistment. She supports Sophia, her brother and sister the most, taking on the role of mother and father when her dad gets deployed or sent out on temporary duty. Though she was born in Richmond, Virginia, Best spent part of her youth in North Carolina but spent her most formative years in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main military base her family was stationed at was Nellis Air Force Base where off base she lived a normal civilian life. She always got picked up from school by her mom and mostly ate home-cooked meals. With the exception of indulging in Popeyes and the Mexican restaurant Robertos which they ate at routinely, however her favorite is the infamous IN-N-Out Burger. “I would go there with my friends and family for birthdays or any celebrations, you name it,!” she said.“I was devastated to not have it anymore when I had to move away.”

During her sophomore year, her sense of home out West was changed when she moved with her family to the South. It was felt that the move to Atlanta in the Peach State would be better for her education. Adjusting to her new environment has been very challenging and has a greater impact on her mind and self-confidence than her academics. “Moving into a new state wasn’t easy for me because I loved where I was from and moving away from family and friends made me really sad,” said Best.

Once she arrived in Atlanta, she immediately missed home and had mixed emotions about her new environment because she couldn’t lean on the ones closest to her for support. In the beginning, she didn’t like the school, traffic, infrastructure, or people and as a result she felt alone with no escape route insight. She often reminisced about the military base in Vegas she lived on with her friends who related to being in a military family as well. “I left a huge part of my life and was forced to start a new one without the people I care about and nostalgic memories that I know I can never recreate,” she said. 

Overall she has attended six different schools since kindergarten and she said she’s never had to deal with the issue of racial bias up until arriving to the South and even at North Atlanta. “In the military environment, regardless of race, everyone treated each other as if they were brothers and sisters,” said Best. “I have witnessed while living here in the South a lot of underlining discrimination toward other races.  

True to her name, Best makes the “best” of any situation she finds herself in and she is heavily involved in extracurricular activities at North. Beyond maintaining a sky-high grade point average, she’s gotten involved in school sponsored clubs by joining BSU, FBLA and Best Buddies. She’s also a member of the Invictus yearbook staff, something that speaks toward her accomplishments since yearbook positions are very selective. “I was always programmed to make the best out of your year and always strive to make your mark,” said Best.

She’s continuously faced with an uphill battle of balancing her new life while reflecting on how her past has shaped who she’s become. Even with the absence of the community she once had, she still strives to push forward in her journey. The lessons she’s learned along the way have helped her embrace the opportunities that will ensure her success in the future.There is no denying that her strength and adaptability has gotten her to where she is today. Her ability to acknowledge the positive and negative sides of her high school experience is an inspiration for others to face change head on and to always look onward and upward.