On Dec. 2, Jamestown High School hosted the first Kyle Elliott Memorial Wrestling Tournament, raising money and awareness for mental health concerns. By all accounts, the tournament was well attended and well run, and Warhill High School emerged victorious.
As Kyle’s mother, I want to thank everyone involved in hosting the event, including Coach Richard Pennycuff, Coach Jonathan Matthews, Athletic Director Kenny Edwards, Principal Cathy Worley and all of the volunteers who contributed to its success.
When Coach Pennycuff approached me about the idea, I was overwhelmed with a flood of emotion. Wrestling was such a big part of Kyle’s high school experience. During the 2007-11 wrestling seasons, Jamestown had a very diverse group of boys on their team. No matter how different they all were, you could not find a closer group of young men.
Out of that team were born several VMI grads who went on to military or law enforcement careers, Department of Defense employees, contractors, mixed martial arts fighters, a future doctor, an engineer and Kyle’s closet friend on the team, a Marine Sargent who has already been deployed for two tours in the Middle East. As you can tell, America’s finest were on one team, and Kyle loved every minute of it.
I avoided going to wrestling matches since Kyle’s passing. It was too hard. As I stepped into the gym for the memorial tournament, I paused for what seemed like forever and reminisced about Kyle and his team. Thank you for the fond memories, Jamestown. For one afternoon I was with my boy again.