By Terry Rogers
After two days of baseball, the Rockies Pro Scouts Purple emerged as the winners of the Second Annual Tricia Martin Scholarship Baseball Tournament which was held at Milford High School on June 13 and 14. The event was organized by Rowland George, who works for the Rockies Pro Scout Baseball Program and his wife, Diane, a librarian at Milford Central Academy. Ceremonial first pitches were thrown Senator Gary Simpson Mayor Bryan Shupe.
The first tournament, held July 5 and 6, 2014 raised $5,000 for a scholarship that would go to a Milford High School male or female athlete who hopes to enter the teaching profession. The student must display the positive attitude and confidence that friends and co-workers say that Dr. Martin exemplified. This year, the scholarship organization raised more than $3,600 from the recent tournament and other fund raisers held throughout the year.
“Tricia exemplified the people in this world who put education of children first and themselves second,” Mr. George said. “If there is one thing my brother, Will, and I understand it is the need to provide kids with the ability to believe in themselves. That is what Tricia did with every student and adult who came in contact with her. She wanted everyone to believe in themselves and know that they could achieve greatness.”
The first scholarship recipient was Sarah Jump who graduated from Milford in 2015. Sarah had a GPA over 4.0 and was a three sport athlete, competing in Cross Country, Swimming and Soccer. Mr. George said that Sarah had decided to attend LaSalle University to pursue a career in teaching.
“As part of the scholarship application, the student was required to write an essay about what Tricia meant to them,” Mr. George said. “In Sarah’s essay, she said that she looked forward to the day when she could stand in front of her own classroom and be as much of an inspiration to her students as Tricia was to every student she met. That was the statement that we were looking for and we knew Sarah was the right person to receive the first scholarship.” Mr. George said that the organization raised $5,000 in their first year and were able to give a $3,000 scholarship to Sarah, the largest single scholarship given to the Class of 2015.
Mr. George said that the balance of the funds raised were placed in an endowment. Additional funds will be added to the endowment so that the organization can provide scholarships of at least $2,000 each year.
Tricia Martin was the Principal at Milford Central Academy when she and her daughter, Taryn, were tragically killed in an auto accident in April 2014. For unknown reasons, Dr. Martin’s vehicle, which was traveling on Barrett’s Chapel Road, crossed the center line and exited the roadway, striking a telephone box and fence. The vehicle then overturned into the roadway. Dr. Martin was inside the vehicle while her daughter got out to seek help from passing motorists. Another vehicle traveling eastbound struck Dr. Martin’s vehicle. Taryn was struck by one of them and Dr. Martin was ejected from her vehicle. She was transported by helicopter to Christiana Medical Center where she was pronounced dead. Taryn was later flown to AI DuPont Children’s Hospital where she died of her injuries a few days later.
Trisha Davis, Seventh Grade Language Arts Teacher at Milford Central Academy and a close personal friend of Dr. Martin’s, established the scholarship fund along with several other teachers to honor Dr. Martin and her daughter. Scholarship applicants must display and exemplify the positive attitude and confidence that was so much of who and what Dr. Martin was about. Members of the Milford High School Athletic Department and Guidance Department, along with Mrs. Davis and Sherri Firch, Instructional Technology Specialist who was also a close friend of Dr. Martin’s determined the scholarship winner. In addition, Dr. Martin’s mother, Sheila Garrow, assisted in deciding who would receive the initial scholarship.