This has been a time like no other in the last 100 years or so.
The coronavirus has claimed over 90,000 lives in America in the last couple of months.
Among the many events that have been cancelled was the 2020 spring sports season in Ohio for interscholastic sporting events. Even the winter sports were affected with no champions crowned in boys and girls basketball and wrestling.
With all of this in mind, the Record-Herald announces the nominees for the 52nd-annual Clarence A. Christman Award.
The award has been given annually since 1969.
Senior student-athletes from Miami Trace High School and Washington High School are eligible for the award. For the first time, senior student-athletes from Fayette Christian School are also included.
The award, which includes a $500 scholarship, will be given to the one nominee who best represents excellence in athletics, academics and leadership.
The award is being sponsored by the Record-Herald and Court House & St. Catherine’s Manor.
There are 30 total student-athletes nominated for the 2020 Christman Award, with 17 from Miami Trace, 11 from Washington and two from Fayette Christian. These student-athletes were nominated by the schools.
Nominees from Miami Trace High School are: Aubrey McCoy, Caleb Perry, Cameron Bucher, Cole Enochs, Devan Thomas, Storm Duffy, Devin Riggs, Andrew Amore, Grace Bapst, Grant DeBruin, Kody Burns, Aubrey Schwartz, Henry DeBruin, Kathryn Leach, Kyler Conn, Kylie Pettit and Simon DeBruin.
Nominees from Washington High School are: Trevor Minyo, Halli Wall, Abby Tackage, Brock Morris, Rayana Burns, Sam Schroeder, Eli Lynch, Shlokansh Shah, Thomas May, Collier Brown and Shawna Conger.
Nominees from Fayette Christian School: Nicholas Epifano and Lane Hufford.
Due to the coronavirus, there will be no award presentation dinner this year. Look inside the Record-Herald throughout this week for more information on all the nominees. The award winner will be announced in the Record-Herald next week.
For a little background on Clarence A. Christman Jr.:
Clarence came from humble beginnings in Washington C.H.
Growing up, he showed an ability to perform ably in athletic endeavors and loved sports throughout his life.
He had help from others, shopkeepers and businessmen, with the tools he needed to participate in sports.
He spent the rest of his life paying back, as well as forward, to the young people of the community.
As an adult with the means, he would often help youngsters who were just like him, eager and interested in athletics, but often unable to acquire even the most modest equipment to compete in sports.
Christman dropped out of Washington High School in his sophomore year and entered the U.S. Navy.
He served in the Navy for three years during World War II. Christman served in a submarine and was wounded when his sub was hit by an enemy depth charge.
Upon returning to Washington C.H. after the war, Christman married and began a family.
As life continued on after the war, Christman worked for the Farm Bureau and subsequently became the city’s auditor and later, city manager.
The Christman Award started as the Record-Herald award in 1969.
After Christman’s untimely death from a heart attack following helping to fight a local fire, the award was soon renamed in his honor.
Christman’s widow, Mary Lou Haines, attended the awards ceremony many times over the years. She was always so pleased to see the young people of Fayette County honored down through the years in memory of Clarence.
Sadly, Mrs. Haines passed away July 10, 2019.
There is also Christman Park in Washington C.H., named in Clarence’s honor, located off Elm Street across from the city water department with Paint Creek flowing along nearby.
Since 1969, the Christman Award has been celebrated as a way to recognize an outstanding high school senior who has excelled in the areas of academics, athletics and leadership.