The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Sports

May 24, 2013

A Don McCormack column: Garrett's Papa would be proud

SAYBROOK TOWNSHIP — The young man, a barrell-chested 10-year-old wearing a suit, looks up to me in tear-filled eyes.

“Thank you for writing those stories about my Papa,” he says. “Thank you.”

Garrett Demshar was on hand last night at Gateway Church for the calling hours for his grandfather, Paul Demshar, who died May 15.

As I knelt down and took Garrett’s hand, you could see his Papa in his face, especially the dynamic cheeks.

“Your Papa was one of the best people I’ve ever known,” Garrett,” I said. “I’m sure he’s looking down on you from heaven right now and he’s so very proud of you.”

Garrett Demshar was there in the beautiful, softly lit church last night because his Papa gave his life to save him from a rip current in the Atlantic Ocean off Jacksonville last Wednesday. Both had gotten caught in the current and the final act of Paul’s 62 years was pushing his grandson toward shore.

After I told Garrett how proud his Papa is of him for being so strong, he replied by looking down at his feet and softly said, “thank you.”

Before I left the line — which included Paul’s beautiful wife, Jennifer, and daughter, Rebekah and her husband, Joe Zelenka, son Matt and his lovely wife, Lisa — and headed toward Paul’s casket, I shared another minute or so with Garrett.

“Know how you can make your Papa the most proud?” I said. “Do what he did. Spend your life being good to people.

“That’s the best way for him to live on... through you.”

Not wanting to overwhelm the young man, I moved on. His father, Matt, Paul’s son, looked toward me, tears streaming down his face, and mouthed, “thank you.”

And the thought immediately struck me — Matt has it backward.

Text Only
Sports
  • Spartans knock around Dragons

    After being cooped up in gymnasiums for the better part of the season so far, the Conneaut and Lakeside softball teams were just happy to get onto a diamond. Playing for the first time in nearly a week, the Spartans toppled the Dragons, 11-2, Thursday afternoon at Lakeside.

    April 18, 2014

  • PV can’t get past Mathews

    Thursday afternoon at Pymatuning Valley, the visiting Mathews Mustangs were able to do what every coach hopes for — execute. They played a clean game from start to finish in every facet of the game, and that carried the Mustangs to an 8-2 Northeastern Athletic Conference victory.

    April 18, 2014

  • Scholastic Statistics:

    BASEBALL
    NAC
    Matthews 8, PV 2
    at PV

    April 18, 2014

  • Scholastic Schedule:

    FRIDAY, APRIL 18
    Baseball

    Geneva at Edgewood (11)
    Niles McKinley at Edgewood (5)
    Conneaut at Lakeside (4:30)
    Madison at Euclid (4:30)
    Softball
    Madison at Edgewood (4:30)
    Geneva at Mentor (10, DH)
    Tennis
    Conneaut at Madison (4)

    April 18, 2014

  • Justin Butler Justin time

    It was just four short years ago that Justin Butler was spending his fall on a soccer field.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: ‘Kids’ stuff’ spurs great responses

    I’m often caught more than a bit off-guard by what stories, features or columns generate responses from you, Loyal Readers, much more so than those who do not.
    For example, the column that appeared in this space a couple of days ago regarding things yours truly and my buddies did as kids prompted more than a few responses.
    A sampling, many of which were posted on my Facebook page:

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • kyle GANG GREEN

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scholastic Schedule:

    THURSDAY, APRIL 17
    Baseball
    Grand Valley at Maplewood (4:30)
    St. John at Lawrence (4:30)
    Mathews at PV (4:30)
    Fairport at Perry (7:30)
    West Geauga at Madison (4:30)
    Harvey at Riverside (4:30)
    Jefferson at Harding (5)

    April 16, 2014

  • Olivia In transition

    Pymatuning Valley graduate Olivia Holt had a distinct reason she chose to play basketball for Mount Union.
    “They do have tradition,” Holt, the daughter of Gus and Michelle Holt, said. “I’m from PV. We had a tradition of winning and working hard there. I wanted to go somewhere that tradition mattered. I knew I was going to get better by coming here.”

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: Spring has sprung one big leak

    Paying a Wednesday morning visit to the variety store...

    Think spring?
    If this, um, err, uh... spring... feels a bit unusual for high school baseball and softball teams in Northeast Ohio, it is, to a point.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

Sports Week in Review April 7-12
Spring Sports Practice in Ashtabula County
2014 AP BB Tourney Top 25
2014 AP BB Tourney Scoreboard
2014 AP BB Tourney News
2014 AP BB Tourney Photos
Star Beacon-Ed Batanian Senior Classic
Girls Regional Basketball Action
Week of Champions
Sports Week in Review February 21, 22
Grand Valley at Edgewood Boys Basketball
Sports Week in Review Feb. 3 to 8
Sports Week in Review January 30 to Feb. 1
Sports Week in Review January 13-18
Sports Week in Review January 10 and 11
Sports Video Archive
House Ads
AP Video