TopOfTheCircle.com

Serving the scholastic field hockey and lacrosse community since 1998

Dec. 29, 2016 –Thoughts of loss

The 2016 calendar year is going to be remembered primarily for people who we, as a culture and society, lost.

We’ve lost sportsmen and sportswomen such as Muhammad Ali, Arnold Palmer, Pat Summitt, and Jose Fernandez. We’ve also lost people who brought these people into our living rooms, such as John Saunders and Craig Sager.

We’ve lost singer-songwriters such as Leonard Cohen, Ralph Stanley, Prince Rogers Nelson, David Bowie, and Merle Haggard.

We have lost authors (Harper Lee, Elie Wiesel), and journalists (Gwen Ifill and Morley Safer. We have lost politicos (John Glenn, Janet Reno, Nancy Reagan, Fidel Castro) and those who made a living talking about them (Gwen Ifill, John McLaughlin).

We have, especially in the last few days, lost a lot of acting talent such as Debbie Reynolds, Carrie Fisher, Florence Henderson, Abe Vigoda, Alan Thicke, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Patty Duke, and Gary Shandling. And we also lost executives who brought them to the fore such as Garry Marshall and Grant Tinker.

The world of field hockey hasn’t been immune.

We lost Betsy Wilson, the long-time PIAA field hockey official and sometime athletic director of Bethlehem Moravian Academy (Pa.), after a battle with cancer. We lost Shippensburg assistant coach Amanda Strous in an act of violence. And we lost Ellen Sosnoski, coach of Catawissa Southern Columbia (Pa.), in a tragic house fire. And there was the death of Mary O’Rourke, who led the Spirit Eagles field hockey organization for a time in the 1990s.

I’ve been reading about times of great national loss, whether it was Pearl Harbor, the assassination of President Kennedy or the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and the shared experiences of people towards a single event cut very deeply and are remembered for decades.

This single calendar year has brought on deep scars, losing people who affected our lives in big ways and the small. And I think it’s one of them, George Michael, who said it best in one of his songs:

And it’s hard to love, there’s so much to hate
Hanging on to hope when there is no hope to speak of
And the wounded skies above say it’s much too late
Well maybe we should all be praying for time.

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