George Fitch has made a lot of people proud of him.
"He's a good kid, and that's probably a good thing because of what he's gone through," said his father, Jay.
Not that he would have gone the other way, but who would blame him. George lost his mother unexpectedly less than two years ago, and lives every day with his family in mind.
Sheffield senior George Fitch
Sheffield senior George Fitch
"I'd have to say that my mother is my inspiration for everything," said George. "Her memory has motivated me to live life to the fullest and try my best. I remember everything she taught me and try to better myself every day like she would have wanted me to."
Jay said George's late mother, Amanda, would tell him, "your his athletic coach and I'm his academic coach."
Now, Jay and George have had to take everything on together. George will attend college next fall - one of his mother's wishes for her son.
"He has a lot of support from his friends, and that's what's got him through the last couple of years," said Jay of George. "That's helped him probably more than anything. It's just a tough situation for us both, but he'll be fine because he's matured a lot in the last year."
He had tremendous role models that helped him the past couple of years, said Sheffield football coach Bryan Gould. Now, George wants to be that kind of role model for others.
The Sheffield senior has been strong, because he's had to be, and has become a leader and a role model that would make his mother proud.
A little "Q & A" with George Fitch:
Q: Who are your parents, siblings, what sports do you participate in?
A: My parents are Jay and Amanda Fitch, I am an only child, and I participate in football, basketball, and track.
Q: You have had your father and other family members as a coach or coaches in different sports. What does that mean to you?
A: I feel like my dad and I are on the same page about things and it helps our team gel as a whole because we can talk to our coaches on a personal level.
Q: What are your goals for the rest of the school year, both in and out of sports?
A: I am hoping to have a very successful senior year in sports and in the classroom, and make as many memories as possible .
Q: Have you thought about after high school? Have you thought about where your going to college and for what, and what you might want to be or do for the rest of your life?
A: I am going to a four-year college. I am between options now and am still deciding on a major. Also, if a college is interested in me athletically, then that is also an option.
Q: How have sports impacted your life up to now?
A: Sports have brought me closer to my friends and we have created memories that I will remember my whole life.
Q: The last name Fitch is synonymous with Sheffield. Do you feel any added pressure or responsibility to the family name?
A: More encouragement than pressure; my family has been playing sports in Sheffield for a while, so I am always getting advice and talks from them. Honestly, I love it. I feel very supported and that must try my best when I go out and represent my name and town.
Q: If you could play any other position in each of the sports you compete in, what would they be and why?
A: In football, I'd have to say QB because you are in control of most offensive plays.
In basketball, probably a shooting guard because Mark, Ike, and Nick don't let me shoot 3-pointers.
In track, I'd say high jump just because I'd never want to run for fun.
Q: Who is someone who has, above all, influenced who you are, and how?
A: I have been influenced by a lot of people in sports and in life, but I'd have to say that my mother is my inspiration for everything.
Her memory has motivated me to live life to the fullest and try my best. I remember everything she taught me and try to better myself every day like she would have wanted me to.
Q: What types of activities are you involved in outside of sports?
A: I am class treasurer, member of SADD, varsity club, national honor society, ROD, and I'm Sheffield's junior supervisor.
Q: Tell me something not many people know about you that you'd be willing to share.
A: I love to snowboard during the winter. Other than basketball, I'm all about snowboarding every weekend.
Q: Tell me one question I forgot to ask, and then answer it.
A: Is there anyone other than my family I'd like to thank?
I'd like to thank my football coaches Bryan Gould and Jeremy Snell for helping me through my high school sports career, Craig Fitch and Jimmy Hahn for pushing me physically on the offseason and being great leaders, and my friends, Rod, Reg, and uni crew for always being their for me.