Van Patrick Memorial Award honors 2 seniors
DEARBORN – The Dearborn Recreation & Parks Commission named Emma Obermiller and Michael Hancock as its High School Athletes of the Year, and recipients of the Van Patrick Memorial Award.
Obermiller, from Dearborn High, played three seasons of basketball and field hockey and also participated with the Pioneers soccer and track teams.
Hancock, from Divine Child, excelled with the Falcons’ cross country team — earning All-State honors four times — and with the school’s track team.
Each year, the Recreation & Parks Commission asks the athletic directors at Dearborn High, Divine Child, Edsel Ford and Fordson to nominate two students — one boy and one girl — for the Van Patrick Memorial Award, based upon their athletic and academic achievements and their community involvement.
Nominated for the 2020 award — in addition to Obermller and Hancock — were Jake Tafelski, Dearborn High; Mia Bidolli, Divine Child; Emily Buck and Ty Wyka, Edsel Ford; and Diana Saleh and Ibrahim Ahmad, Fordson.
The late Van Patrick, a longtime Dearborn resident, was an acclaimed radio and television personality who broadcast college and professional sports from the late 1940s until his passing in 1974. Patrick also served on the Recreation & Parks Commission, and following his passing, the commission created the Van Patrick Memorial Award to honor the High School Athletes of the Year.
Normally the announcement would have been made at the commission’s Annual Sports Awards Ceremony, which was scheduled for March 15, but cancelled as the result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We were disappointed we had to cancel our annual event,” Recreation & Parks Commission Chairwoman Elizabeth Murray said, “and we were hoping to reschedule it, but in these uncertain times, we felt it was best just to make the announcement.”