Courage Bowl Luncheon Celebrates Honorary Coaches, Cheerleaders

September 20, 2017

The honorary coaches and cheerleaders for Courage Bowl XIII were announced during a celebratory luncheon on Thursday, Sept. 14, hosted by St. John Fisher College. During the annual event, Fisher and College at Brockport football and cheerleading teams had the chance to meet the boys and girls—all campers from Camp Good Days and Special Times—who will stand with them on the sidelines at this weekend’s Courage Bowl.

Fisher coaches and cheerleaders with their honorary coaches for Courage Bowl XIII.

The game kicks off at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 16, at Fisher’s Growney Stadium. Tickets are $5 and can be bought at the gate on game day.

“Fisher students hold Camp very near and dear to their hearts—not only thanks to the Courage Bowl but also the Teddi Dance for Love, the College’s longest student-run tradition,” said Dr. Gerard J. Rooney, Fisher’s president, at the luncheon. “Our honorary captains and cheerleaders are the true winners of the Courage Bowl. This game has become one of the most special events that we participate in each year, and they are the reason why.”

Fisher Head Coach Paul Vosburg, Fisher President Gerard Rooney, Camp Good Days Founder Gary Mervis, Brockport President Heidi Macpherson, and Brockport Head Coach Jason Mangone.

Fisher Head Coach Paul Vosburg, Fisher President Gerard Rooney, Camp Good Days Founder Gary Mervis, Brockport President Heidi Macpherson, and Brockport Head Coach Jason Mangone.

The honorary coaches for the Cardinals are Alexander Brown, age 10; Connor Stanton, age 11; and Logan Dileo, age 12. On Saturday, the coaches will be in the locker room with the team, lead them onto the field, be at midfield for the coin toss, and coach from the sidelines during the game.

A 6th grader, Alex was first diagnosed with leukemia when he was 17 months old, and has known hospitals and doctors for most of his life. Two years ago, he and his family were able to celebrate his first survivor treatment.

Connor will celebrate his 12th birthday, on Friday, Sept. 15, with the Cardinals! He is a member of his school’s football team and participates in chorus, select chorus, and all county chorus.

An honorary coach meets Fisher coaches and players.

An honorary coach meets Fisher coaches and players.

Logan was diagnosed with cancer when he was 23 months old with a five percent chance of survival. Despite those odds, he prevailed and turns 13 this month. An eighth grader, Logan is an avid football fan, collects football cards, and runs track at school. His long-term goal is to become a football coach.

Ryleigh Farrel, age 6, and Erika Berry, age 9, were chosen as Fisher’s honorary cheerleaders. They will cheer with the Cardinal squad during the game.

A native of Syracuse, Ryleigh is involved in gymnastics, dance, and figure skating and volunteers her time to rescue dogs.

Fisher cheerleader Rebecca Brandt with honorary cheerleader Erika Berry.

Fisher cheerleader Rebecca Brandt with honorary cheerleader Erika Berry.

Erika—who is known for her “I can do it” attitude—participates in dancing, cheerleading, and running.

Four campers—David Costanza, age 15; Ian Cameron, age 13; and Oneil Carter, age 15; and Lucas Lowe, age 12—will support the Brockport Golden Eagles on Saturday.

David enjoys swimming, riding his bike, and shooting hoops. He also loves when pet therapy visits him during his time spent at Roswell Park Cancer Institute for his monthly maintenance treatments.

At 10-months-old, Ian was diagnosed with a cancer that paralyzed him from the waist down, but he has been cancer-free since September 2005. He is now in 8th grade at Grand Island Middle School. This month, he began sled hockey and earlier this year, he had the opportunity to meet Buffalo Bills legend Jim Kelly, who took him on a tour of the New Era Stadium.

Oneil is a fun-loving 15-year-old who loves football, basketball, and school, especially math.

Lucas has attended Camp Good Day since 2011 after being diagnosed with leukemia. He enjoys watching WWE wrestling and spending time with his family.

Emma Golden, age 9, and Maggie Riordan, age 9, will shake green and gold pom-poms alongside Brockport cheerleaders during the Courage Bowl.

A cancer-survivor, Emma was just two-years-old when she was diagnosed with stage three neuroblastoma. She underwent countless chemo treatments, radiation, surgeries, and other procedures including two stem cell transplants. Emma, a fourth grader, has participated in Camp Good Days events including day camp and, for the past two years, the summer overnight camp.

Maggie attends the Archangel School and is in 5th grade. When she grows up she wants to be a teacher. She loves cheerleading for the Ogden Bears football team and dance. When she is old enough, she plans to be a Camp Good Days counselor.

Gary Mervis presents the Fr. Joe Lanzalaco Memorial Courage Award to former Buffalo Bills kicker Steve Christie.

Gary Mervis presents the Fr. Joe Lanzalaco Memorial Courage Award to former Buffalo Bills kicker Steve Christie.

At the luncheon, Gary Mervis, founder of Camp Good Days, also announced former Buffalo Bills kicker Steve Christie as the recipient of the Fr. Joseph Lanzalaco Memorial Courage Award. The award is given to members of the community who have displayed great courage in the face of a difficult time in their personal lives.

In addition to the athletes and coaches from the Fisher Cardinals and the Brockport Golden Eagles, elected officials, members of the College’s administration, and Camp Good Days and Special Times staff families, and supporters attended the luncheon.

For more information about the Courage Bowl, visit http://athletics.sjfc.edu/.