Cuyahoga Falls -- Many people sitting in the home stands at Falls High's football game against Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School on Sept. 16 traded in their black and gold colors for orange shirts to honor the memory of a student who passed away.
On the Monday before the game, Falls High teacher Craig Wargowsky said some of his students came to him and said that Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School student, Garrett Bach, who had cerebral palsy, passed away on Sept. 10.
Wargowsky, who teaches career technology, DECA marketing and graphic arts, explained that the students wanted to do something to honor both Garrett and show support to his classmates.
He noted that his students are creating "spirit packs" for each game for the school community. Neon was supposed to be the theme on this recent week, but Wargowsky said the students "suggested that we change the theme to orange to not only honor a fallen student but support the fellow teenagers that were dealing with a loss."
Wargowsky noted orange was Garrett's favorite color. The message on the shirts said "Together We Swarm."
The shirts were ordered that day and then the senior marketing students designed an image incorporating both school logos (Falls High's tiger paw and Brecksville's bee), according to Wargowsky. A total of 100 shirts were printed and sold throughout the school buildings in the district.
Wargowsky estimated 60 students and 40 adults wore the shirts. Young's Screenprinting also created orange shirts, but Wargowsky did not have a figure on how many were made by the company.
"It was wonderful seeing the students make a sincere gesture to another school," said Wargowsky. "Their unselfish act helped prove that these teens are thoughtful and willing to support others in both good times and difficult times. The community support was great to witness and allowed us all to realize that there is nothing better than helping others."
The student leaders on the project were: Emma Freeman, Tanner Treptow, Kyle Borton, and Chase Mize.