Colvin tourney a rousing success
HOOSICK, N.Y. -- An electric-blue and bright sunny sky on Saturday was former Hoosick Falls football player Steve Colvin's way of letting people know that he was watching.
Hundreds of people -- from near and far -- came for the first-ever Stephen Colvin Memorial Football Tournament, a flag-football event that brought out 32 teams and raised nearly $15,000 for a scholarship.
"It speaks volumes about what our community means and what Steve meant to the community. It was a 2 way street," said Alex Lilac, a 2012 graduate of Hoosick Falls and one of the organizers of the event. "Steve brought us together on earth, now he's [in heaven] bringing us back together, it's really special to see this happen."
Colvin, 21, died in February in a ski accident in Maine. Colvin was attending and playing football at Husson University. Football was a major part of Colvin's life, and Brad Burns -- another former Panther and current Hobart Statesman -- said that Colvin would have loved to play in the tournament.
"He would have loved to see this, he was such a competitor, he'd want to win this whole thing," Burns said.
Lilac said he expected to see a pretty good response, but nothing like what happened on Saturday.
"We had to call the school groundskeeper to add a field," Lilac said. "But it's a great problem to have. The first two teams that showed up gave us $500 donations each. It's amazing, and that it's in Steve's name makes it more special."
The Colvin scholarship will give $1,000 to one male and one female graduating from Hoosick Falls and going on to play a sport in college.
"The best part isn't the money, it's getting everyone back here at Hoosick Falls together, it means a lot," Lilac said.
Burns' team included former Panthers Billy Pine and Josh Brogue, while Lilac's team had Tanner Williams and Cody Laflamme, both star athletes in the past handful of years for Hoosick Falls.
"We were all part of a big group with Steve," said Burns, who was two years behind Colvin in school. "At a small school, the [grade level] doesn't matter. One of my friends, Garrett Foster, flew back from Florida for this. He came back for the week to hang out and celebrate -- it shows how much Steve was loved and how people felt about him."
As successful as this year's event, next year will be bigger and better, Lilac said.
"We'll start advertising earlier, try to get the same teams to come back, make it really something memorable," Lilac said.
Burns said the event was a great way to celebrate Colvin's life.
"He wouldn't want us mourning too much," Burns said. "We had our time to mourn, now it's about celebrating his life. You have to live life to the fullest."
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