On Wednesday evening at Chanhassen High School, the Chaska Hawks baseball team defeated the Chanhassen Storm 1-0.
Any game that ends 1-0 is quite a game but it was quite a tribute from the kids on both teams that people will long remember, because they long remembered Ethan Herman, who would have been a senior this year had he not taken his own life in 2010. Do the math on that. He was just 12 years old.
The Minnesota State High School League’s John Millea writes that the seniors from both teams boys preceded the game by standing at home plate with three jerseys.
Ethan was a stellar athlete; a youth wrestling state champion, captain of his middle school wrestling and football teams and a talented baseball player. He also loved the outdoors, winning an archery state championship and bagging three deer before he turned 12. He rode dirt bikes and four-wheelers and loved to spend time with his buddies.
“He was a great ballplayer, great football player and wrestler,” said Costello, who has a tattoo in Ethan’s memory on the back of his left shoulder. “He always did stuff for the team, never for himself. He always wanted to make other people happy, not just himself. He was a real selfless guy.”
Ethan struggled with concussion-related issues, including headaches and depression, before he died. He may have experienced concussions in football as well as wrestling. His parents, Vicki and Jeff Herman, live in Carver (which like Chaska and Chanhassen is in Carver County).
In Ethan’s memory, The Hermans founded an organization called Head4Awareness. They conduct a 5K run every year, and this year’s event will be held Aug. 13 (information is available at www.head4awareness.com). This year the Hermans will award $40,000 in scholarships to students at Chaska and Chanhassen.
“I’ll never forget him,” Luke Roskam, who got the save in the game, said. “He was an outgoing kid. He never left anyone behind. He talked to everyone, he wasn’t shy. He really brought the best out of everyone.”
Which is clearly still the case.