Sports

Gov. Livingston Athletic Community Gives Back to Support Fellow Highlander Diagnosed with Cancer

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The Gov. Livingston Girls Soccer team donates $10 per goal scored to support teammate's brother diagnosed with cancer. Credits: Karen Bachert
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Gov. Livingston soccer goalie Michelle Coyle with her parents Bill and Eileen. Michelle's brother Will was diagnosed with cancer and just completed his last chemo cycle. Credits: Bobbie Peer
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BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - It didn't take long for the Gov. Livingston community to step in to help the Coyle family, who was going through a difficult time this past fall when their son William, a sophomore at Gov. Livingston High School, was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in August.

William is a member of the cross county team and brother to GL girls varsity senior soccer goalie Michelle Coyle. 

Members of the cross country team spearheaded a "Team William" bracelet sale. "I thought it was so sweet that William's teammates wanted to support him and I figured that they would have a sale and set up a table at one of their meets," said William's mother Eileen. "I never imagined that it would evolve into something that would involve all the GL Athletic teams and the entire school with the sale of the 'Team William' bracelets."

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In addition, the girls soccer team wanted to show their support. Each year, the team raises funds through a mum sale, as well as a donation drive to assist in team costs. This year, Coach Mike Roof and the team wanted to help one of their own and Roof agreed to donate $10 per goal to the Coyle family.  At last week's team banquet, the team captains announced their pleasure in donating $430 to the Coyle family for the 43 goals scored this season. 

"We can't even begin to thank everyone -- from the sale of the 'Team William' bracelets, meals, gift cards and gifts to William. Our entire Thanksgiving dinner was provided by friends complete with pies, delicious desserts and a beautiful floral centerpiece. The list of the generosity of others goes on and on," said Eileen.

"The kindness and support of friends and strangers alike has made this difficult time for us much easier," she said. "We feel very blessed and grateful to live in this wonderful community."

William completed his last chemo cycle on December 5 and his PET Scan shows no signs of the cancer. He has been home schooled while going through his treatments and is hopeful to return back to school in January. His prognosis is great and he plans and looks forward to running in the spring when he is medically cleared by the doctors.

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