Mandatory reporting: Joe Paterno’s obligation to report child sex abuse

Did he do what he could? Much of the controversy surrounding the Penn State child sex abuse case that led to the ousting of longtime coach Joe Paterno concerns this question.

But just what do football coaches — and for that matter, other people in positions of authority — have to report?

Here to answer that question is Kevin Hull, a Kitsap County deputy prosecutor. The so-called “mandatory reporting” law in Washington state is quite clear, he says.

Here’s Kevin’s take:

Are you a professional educator in a public school? A doctor? A nurse? A lawyer? A social services provider? A child care provider? A psychologist?

If so, you (and others) are mandatory reporters of suspected child abuse under Washington law. Specifically, our statute in Washington states that when a mandatory reporter has reasonable cause to believe that a child has suffered abuse or neglect, he or she shall report such incident, or cause a report to be made, to the proper law enforcement agency. This past week’s events at Penn State University must serve as a reminder of the tragic consequences that can happen when adults fail to share what they know.

What occurred in State College, Pennsylvania is newsworthy because of the long list of alleged victims. Coupled with this is the centerpiece of Penn State’s football program, iconic head coach Joe Paterno. Earlier in the week, Coach Paterno said, “With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.” Pennsylvania’s Attorney General commented that Coach Paterno fulfilled his obligation to report under Pennsylvania state law. But Coach Paterno is now apparently wrestling with his own conscience and realizing he could have done more than fulfill his legal obligation.

Law enforcement, prosecutors, judges and juries are imperfect and don’t always get it right. It is agreed that the consequences to the falsely accused can be devastating. But does the fact that injustices do occur justify inaction? Our mandatory reporting statute in Washington requires that law enforcement be alerted to whatever knowledge that may exist if there is reasonable cause to believe that a child is being abused. At the very least, evidence that child abuse is occurring must be investigated. Prosecutors do not charge every suspect because of the appropriately high standard of proving a case beyond a reasonable doubt. And juries will acquit a defendant when this burden of proof is not met. Outcomes are rarely perfect, but perfection is not the standard.

We know that most perpetrators of child abuse are either a friend or family member of the victim. The complicated dynamics that occur when a family member abuses a child creates conflict and clouds judgment. There is a common refrain that a delay in reporting from a child victim is somehow indicative of a lack of credibility. But if presumably responsible adults have knowledge of abuse and don’t have the wherewithal to alert law enforcement the expectation that a child speak up may be unreasonable.

If we can take a positive from the events at Penn State it should be that it is never too late to report suspected abuse. Adults must bear the responsibility of protecting children. Please look at RCW 26.44.030 to see if you are a mandatory reporter. And even if you may not be a mandatory reporter under the law, shouldn’t you, in any event, report to law enforcement what you may know about a child who may be suffering from abuse? The lesson being learned at Penn State today is that this answer to this question is yes.

Kevin Hull is the chief deputy prosecutor in the Kitsap County Prosecutor’s Office’s Special Assault Unit.

(Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.)

31 thoughts on “Mandatory reporting: Joe Paterno’s obligation to report child sex abuse

  1. Shocking is that the school did nothing with the report coach Joe Paterno gave them.

    How could Paterno continue working with the asst. coach KNOWING he was abusing the boys?
    So – it seems football games trump decency, law and ethical morality at Penn State.
    Is Penn State merely the tip of an iceberg? Any other schools we don’t know about where kids are being abused and too afraid to speak up?

  2. We are all certainly entitled to our opinions. What I see is;
    1) the cops were involved in an other earlier case and essentially dismissed it.
    2) the adult witness did not call the cops or interfere in the activities
    3) Sandusky was no longer an employee of the University, and not in the “chain of command, but did have an office on site provided to him by the university and not Coach Paterno.
    4) Coach Paterno was given incomplete information from the eyewitness, any thing the Coach said would be considered “hearsay”.
    5) Coach informed his chain of command that something was being reported and should be investigated.

    And ten years later “we” are rewriting history with moral outrage.

    Hmmm, perhaps I should sue my mother for having caught my abuser and not reported it to the police and the phyciatrist she took me to also. Think 40 to 50 years is too long?
    (search “Sandusky timeline”, to see how each of my points line up)

  3. “…perhaps I should sue my mother for having caught my abuser and not reported it to the police and the phyciatrist she took me to also…”

    The problem is your abuser, unpunished thanks to your mother, likely continued on committing the same crime against other children.

    Should you sue your mother? I don’t know. I wonder how she felt knowing other children were unprotected – thanks to her not reporting the offense against her child’s predator and getting him off the streets.

    Justice is not always swift.

  4. There’s two things that I would add.

    1.) Part of Paterno’s dilema could have been based upon the University’s Insubordination Policy. As a Coach, he made the legally required report and submitted it. It’s no secret that PSU was looking to “retire” Paterno for the last 10 years.

    2.) The scary issue for me is that none of the other administrators are being investigated for being pedophiles. Yes, there are people who “enabled” his behavior. But due to the length of time and number of victims, I have to wonder if Sandusky had accomplices.

    I’d encourage people to read the entire indictment. At 23 pages, I fear this is just a taste of what will be coming ahead.

  5. Well, he’s dead, and I wouldn’t say he didn’t get punished.

    Never the less, my point is Coach Paterno is being punished for nonaction on something about which he had NO FIRST HAND knowledge, and FOR which he took the appropriate action with the knowledge he did have.

    Particularly in todays day and age where you can be almost instantly cut our of the “information loop” due to legal and privacy concerns. Even if he had called the police, or pressed it with his superiors, he quite probably would have been told little or nothing.

    Sandusky had multiple accusations prior to the one where SOMETHING was reported to Coach Paterno, who then passed it up the line AS HE WAS REQUIRED TO DO.

    If you followed my advice and searched for the time line, you would have found that in 1998 (when Sandusky WAS still employed by the university) a mother complained to the police. They interviewed and “The case is closed after then-Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar decides there will be no criminal charge.”

    In 2000, a janitor observed “Sandusky with a young boy pinned up against the wall, performing oral sex on the boy”, the janitor told people he worked with and his supervisor advised him “to whom he should report the incident.” The janitor was a temporary employee and never makes a report. Victim 8’s identity is unknown. Sandusky was no longer working for the university at this point, but he was running his organization for troubled children.

    This alone should give anyone pause as these people are extremely adept at convincing people up and down the chain that something has been misinterpreted and the people who saw something saw it wrong.

    And my mother thought she was protecting me (and it didn’t occur to her she was really protecting herself, while further isolating me) at the time.

  6. It appears to me that Coach Paterno did report the child molestation to local law enforcement, the Chief of the Campus Police, and therefore complied with PA and Washington state law. Without knowing Paterno’s level of authority in the matter as a head football coach, it’s hard to understand what more he could have done to resolve the matter after the university president agreed with the course of action recommended by the chief of campus police. So on the surface it looks to me like Paterno was betrayed by Sandusky and the university administration he faithfully served for many decades. I am sure there will be more sordid details revealed in the years to come.

  7. “Coach Paterno is being punished for nonaction on something about which he had NO FIRST HAND knowledge, and FOR which he took the appropriate action with the knowledge he did have.”

    Penn State DID HAVE the information to investigate….but football is God and secrecy took the place of open disclosure…or so it seems.

    Kim -It must not have occurred to your mom that had the person before you, her daughter, filed a complaint – you likely would not have been touched and your family not split just as surely as dynamite can cause mass destruction of another kind.

    Warm regards – Best wishes… Sharon O’Hara

  8. As a teacher (and as the article says) I am required to report any incident of child abuse or neglect. However as a teacher, I only report it my my superior and not directly to the police. I taught for 33 years, retired and then went back. All my bosses told me to report it to them only and they would do the rest. We even had an inservice where a police sgt. came a spoke to us and told us to report it to our superior. It had to do with my name not being brought into the conversation when the police did confront the abuser. And although the person reporting is to remain a secret, my boss would take the heat if anything happened. Is this what Joe Paterno did thinking the person he reported the incident to would take care of it? I don’t know.

  9. Jopa has been made a scapegoat by the Regents at PS….They have been after him for years……..He broke no law and reported the abuse to the proper channels. Its a crime what they did to this man who gave PS 60 years of his life. He should have been allowed to finish the season.

  10. Joe Paterno first heard of this in 1998 – and fired Sandusky in 1999, yet allowed him to keep his key to the locker room, stay on staff at PSU etc. 3 years later, he learned of another incident IN HIS LOCKER ROOM…and now, 9 years later – he wants us to feel sorry for him?

    Joe Paterno has a statue in front of the stadium. His NAME is on the athletic building. The buck stops with him. Period.

  11. I was born and raised in Western Pa. (altoona) and had season tickets to PS games for years….I followed Coach Paterno’s career …This man is one the claasiest people in this country. No one cares more about young people then him..He has contributed millions of dollars in their behalf over his 60 years there. Although he broke no law and committed no crime he has been convicted in the court of public opinion..It makes me wonder where we are in this country. Is it Nazi Germany of the thirties where a man can be executed without due process. Reading some of the posts in this forum who are like sharks that smell blood in the water…

    Sadly this has grown much bigger then Coach Paterno and to me its frightening.
    No one, I repeat no one feels worse about what happened to those kids then he does…You can take that to the bank…

  12. “…broke no law and committed no crime he has been convicted in the court of public opinion….”

    Not really. People are confused and upset – many of them mothers of boys who play/ed football or other sports. They are mothers and fathers of boys who might be vulnerable to such advances of an assistant coach….or been a victim of such a crime.

    Coach Paterno has proven to be a great football coach – he could not have done what he has without empathy, flair, passion and love for the sport and the kids he coached.

    He – none of us – can know if he had done more than he did if it would have made a difference. Maybe some of the public passion is because most of us are guilty of not doing enough.

    Maybe the game of football really is God to impassioned fans of the game and the players and nothing else matters..

  13. The coach had one request. To finish the year. He said he would retire then. Doesn’t 60 years service to the University mean anything? I still say this is a lynch job. God bless Joe, lets hope this does not kill him.

  14. God Bless the boys used and abused by an assistant coast at Penn State in the name of football.

    Nothing matters more than our (society) failure to protect those kids from a predator.

    Actually, I saw the interview on tv where he said he wanted to finish the season, then retire – almost like the game of football matters. I hope Penn State NEVER wins another game.

  15. From what I have read Coach Paterno was a class act. He is held in high regard by other coaches , opposing players and especially by the young men he helped throughout his career. But is appears from the facts he also showed a lack of moral discernment in his larger responsibility in this case . Was it because of his lack of concern for the victim, possible future victims . Was it to protect the Sports program , the reputation of the college ? Did he just assume his responsibility had ended because he reported it and assumed the proper corrective actions would be handled correctly . Which I guess is what the person may have thought who reported it to him .

    The main point is he was in charge , his responsibility was for all those in his area of supervision . The welfare of those kids , future victims were his responsibilty .

    Hopefully this will once again question the way we allow college sports to undermine the basic reason these kids are suppose to be attending college . Its not for a chance to audition for the NFL , or is so colleges can build nicer stadiums or to purchase new libraries with expensive TV dollars .

    But it apparently is not just Paterno , and their appears to be a long list of those who showed no real concern here. It reminds somewhat of the human mindset that sees a person walk over a homeless
    person who appears to be unconconcienous, then the next person does it and the next . No one stops to see if the person needs help .

    No one stopped to see if kid was helped . The whole lot of them just put it out of their mind set and assumed someone would take care of it or just Did not care if they did or not .

  16. I thought in this country you were innocent until proven guilty..As far as Sundusky goes he claims he is innocent and abused no one…I don’t know if he abused anyone or not but it seems to me people are jumping the gun on this by firing the coach.

  17. Super Fan I u8nderstand your position . And as facts bear out Coach paterno may not be guilty under any “legal” crime . But how many times does a baseball manager get firec because his team does not perform . How many times is it because of certain players but not the manager ? Just as the President of our country at times takes the heat for things he has no control of , or the Captain of the Ship goes down with the ship so to speak because of situations he had no control of to prevent .

    I have not read the reports , but have heard commentary on some of the reports . It i defintely a serries of mistakes by many people . For one you have a chain of command that states it was a rape , then the next person is told it is inappropriate touching , then another is told is it inappropriate behavior , then another it is told it sus[picious behavior , etc .

    To put in perspective , say the local jail had a clear record of abuse by guards to the inmates that was dating back ten or more years . You receive information that the head of the jail House had received information about the abuse ten years ago in some form . Would you not expect that manager to resign or be fired ? It does not mean he is guilty of anything , just a failure at leasst in the confidence of the people to run a Jail House that was accountable to the people that paid his salary .

    The fault of Paterno may be pure circumstantial , but the confidence of the people in the Institution has been compromised . Its one of the aspects of leadership and being in charge . You get the glory for victory and blame for defeat. Both may have little to do with the one in charge . The Buck stops at the top. Perhaps not justice , but again those kids will NEVER have justice . Making our leaders accountable is the best way of trying to make sure it never happens again .

  18. Here we have a prime example of why I say that we should not publicly identify defendants prior to their conviction. This has become nothing more than a Witchhunt, destroying the careers and lives of people who aren’t even accused of a crime. Everyday more lurid stories appear in the media whose unsatiable demand for “dirt” just drives the frenzy. Not only have they already convicted Sandusky they are trying to spin this to destroy everything and everyone he has been even remotely involved with. Now there’s 10 more “victims” coming out of the woodwork? Can you say “Gravy Train”? Wrer you ever in the same room as Sandusky as a kid? That ought to be good for a 6 figure settlement! You won’t have to produce evidence that anything actually happened, it must have cause that guy is a Witch…er…Pervert!

  19. On the other side of the coin are the people who haven’t reported the abuse through shame, fear, any number of ‘reasons’ parents or children choose not to report.
    They come out of the “woodwork” when the abuser is finally brought to task.

    “Gravy Train?” Talk to the adult children who lived through being sexually abused by the pervert. Their lives are forever changed – their natural child trusting innocence destroyed.

    Gravy Train, you called it?

  20. Excellent points Mike. Just remember all you people who are calling for heads to roll you could be accused of a crime you did not commit. I am no Michale Jackson fan but I can remember the court of public opinion and the media had whim convicted and we all know what happened in the end.

  21. Thanks Super fan , and your point is well made may I add. Especially in the age of media unaccountability we have seen much reporting deserving to be considered inappropriate itself . Politically , in regards to celbrities , sports heroes and anyone in the public eye . Accusations , especially he said she said are never able to be proven in most cases, even innocence in court never stops the stigma from following an individual . All the court proves is the evidence did not meet the requirement for a guilty verdict , as In Michael jack case , he still had a stigma following him to his grave in many circles. Once your accused of anything , it sticks in some minds of people.

    I listen to ESPN radio often at work and in my car and listening to this has been one hugh mess regardless. I am not making a judgment on Paterno in regards to everything , I am agreeing with his dismissal based on the fact he was in charge and failed to ask the questions i believe should have been asked . .

    I know Pastors who for just sake of making sure that even the appearance of inapproriate actions will not counsel a female without making sure they are able to show no possibly mis conduct occurs . That is a principle that people in authority may need to follow more and more in this I am a victim age we live in . That is not to judge the kids now speaking out now either . That perhaps is another lesson learned by this . “CYA”

  22. Interesting – You folks worry about the few highly reported “Gravy Train” and want to keep information secret until the person is convicted.

    I’m guessing the vast majority of victims don’t sue or realize a dime out of their abuse – nothing can change it or give them their lives back…but you people don’t seem to care about them.. or it seems, the abuse itself.

    Rather than pastors worrying about being alone with a person/child – perhaps the public best consider having a witness with every pastor visit to safeguard themselves against possible abuse advances.

    Mick – thanks for the head’s up warning about pastors. btw…
    “I know Pastors who for just sake of making sure that even the appearance of inapproriate actions will not counsel a female without making sure they are able to show no possibly mis conduct occurs…”

    Is it only females who are abused by pastors? Shouldn’t they worry about males too?

  23. First Sharon your unable to read the hearts about the people here who disagree with you or I . I agree basically with your opinion in regards to the dismissal of Paterno and others who have had knowledge of abuse who were in positions of authority .

    Second my example of how Ministers are to refrain from the appearance of evil is based on Bibical Scriptures , it also makes sense . It covers all areas of where people could use the situation to gossip . It does not stop the gossip, but its unable to be proved . Its also not met just for minsiters , it is a teaching for all Christians . It makes sense in secular situations also. For one we all can fall to tempations , having some sort of accountability and over seer is a good thing . When a Minister has an affair , it does not only damage to the people he is involved with , it has to do with the possible consequences to those in the church also . Your comments made me sorry i brought it ip , but I believe the others totally understood the point .

    The people here at Penn state , the kids in classes , the future of education opportunity at the school has now come into play . Plus the victims , their lives will never receive justice as I stated . All because the college failed to handle this correctly and above reproach .

    The appearance and accountablity with young children is important, not just males , and also with dollars taken in for charity and public education , governemnt etc all have checks and balances . . Having someone over see and make sure everything is on the straight and narrow promotes confidence and accountability .The world we live in often likes to believe the worse. As you have here proven with your opinion about the people who disagree with you and i , it does not mean they do not care . They happen to disagree with how this has played out . Your opinion of them is based on your emotion . You undermine the argument we on the side of defending the firings .

    I wish more people did take your view and mine a few years back in how strong we should handle cases involving child molestation . Jessicas Law for instance was voted down on a pure party vote . I was involved getting that passed .
    I can understand your anger , but I suggest you put it to better use . Actually advocating for the kids of abuse , instead of alianating even those who agree with you also.

  24. Mick, I’ve never claimed to read someone’s heart – only know what they say and do. I write how I feel about any issue as clearly as possible – not politically correct.

    Child sexual abuse issues is something that ‘should’ be a call for adults to take action – NOT worry more about a celebrity being sued and to protect the celebrity against the child/parent who dares complain about sexual treatment.

    Not one expressed thought of the vulnerable children exploited through fear of reprisal if they spoke or complained.

    I am speaking for those who will not/can not speak up for themselves.
    I am sorry to alienate anyone – but I don’t know how to write any differently than what I think and feel.

    I am not a trained reporter. I am a person who has lived a long time and seen a lot of stuff. I’ve written about ‘stuff’ since I was seventeen years old and impelled to keep ‘talking.’
    I’m sorry I don’t know how to write any differently, Mick.

  25. Sharon, We have gone around this more than once. You iknow as well as I that false allegations of Child Sexual Abuse are both common and pervasive. Once an individual is accused that’s it, no matter how unreliable the testimony, no matter that there’s no evidence, no matter the motives of the accusers no matter the outcome of the legal proceeding.You also know as well as I that the chances of a false allegation increases exponentially when there is a custody battle or a wealthy celebrity involved. Regardless of the legal results of this there will be MILLIONS of dollars paid to the ever increasing line of “victims”. My point all along has been that we need to protect everyone involved in these matters (and all criminal cases) equally. Critical reforms are nessessary for the sake of us all. “Better a hundred guilty men go free than one innocent man spend one night in jail”

  26. Mike, here is where I disagree with you: “Better a hundred guilty men go free than one innocent man spend one night in jail”…”

    Why would you think 100 guilty men should be turned loose to commit more crimes than for 1 innocent man to spend one night in jail. A decent innocent man would refuse to leave jail under those circumstances.

    Far better that one innocent man spend one night in jail that let a hundred guilty men free to commit more crimes and make more victims to their crimes.

    You speak more to celebrity figures and leeches to those people.

    I speak about non-celebrity people abused by respected people in their own neighborhoods. And no one spoke up…!

  27. I apologize also Sharon . Understand your compassion and actual admire your concern for wanting to speak up for those who have no voice .

    And Mike of course there have been false allegations that have ruined careers and lives of people . I recall about 15 years ago a hugh case involving many people and DSHS that turned out to be total fabrication in this state . Also have seen stories of accusers who had their memories that were suppose to be burried become suddenly awaken through therapy and the made accusations decades after the abuse f child molestation. Lawsuits followed .

    I suggest before you go further though , actually read the the tesimony that has been recorded in court . There is testimony that makes the allegations that indeed eye witness accounts testify to the abuse , and court testimiony stating who was told , with documentation of those correspondence being available .

    AT least there is a paper trail that is non disputed that alledges sexual rape , sexual molestation . With parties from Penn State speaking to it in some form or the other and failing to follow through , believing their responsibilty was done . Even thought they had positions of authority and were responsible.

    Its a mess, and your on thin ice in regards to even suggesting this is just a he said she said situtation . Thats as bogus as saying all is guilty . Its a he said , he said , he said , he said , he said he said situation documented on paper from different people . And more .

    Obviously the parties involved believed there was mis conduct from their taken , or lack there of and how this mess was handled only showed at least a lack of “judgement to be kind ” , and the worse an actual attempt to hide mis conduct in the hope of sweeping it under the carpet . Its a serious situation .

    One that if handled properly 12 years ago , the media would have no part in it but a small one .

    Better then 100 guilty go free then one innocent be jailed . I understand your belief, actually share it , we have innocent till proven guilty ,

    But how many kids are you willing to have molested for a failure to have policies that are demnaded of those in charge to carry out . I am not talking about guilt , i am talking about about acting responsibile and making sure these situations are not buried .

    I suggest to you I rather have 100 loose their job because they failed to carry out responsible procedures to insure the safety of children then one kid being raped in a shower , with others possibly coming after .

    Listen to the Costas interview of the alledged rapist , then make a comment like you did here . The taped apology of the alledged rapist apologizing to the parent of the kid ,

    Please and perhaps you would understand how silly your comments are sounding .

  28. Mick you are making my point here, the “eyewitness”, who wasn’t credible before, is changing his story daily, the supposed “paper trail” hasn’t been presented in court, and Bob Costas is collecting “evidence” in a public phone interview. This whole thing has become a sham. How on earth is Sandusky supposed to get a fair and impartial jury with every media outlet on the planet busily forming up the lynch mob 24/7? How can any of us blindly expect things to be any diffrent when it’s our turn to face a bogus charge? Is your ex fighting you for custody? Do you work with a youth group? You could be next. At least by protecting the identity of the accused we can limit the damage wrought by these endemic false persedutions. The only thing remarkable about the Wenatchee Witchhunt was it’s scope and audacity, the rest of that story, from the forced and manupulated “victim” testimony, to the utter lack of evidence is played out everyday somewhere in our state, with a 98% conviction rate.

  29. I am not speaking to if the person is guilt necessarily. Sandusky talking to Costas is incredible . I would have thought any lawyer would have told him to shut up . Did you hear the man explainging his touching the legs and such of the boys in showers while they were both naked ? That alone would have gotten any one fired and reported I would think . Talk about someone who has no understanding of how middle aged men are to behave with boys . This is Sandusky saying he did this .

    The procedure by Coach and others is the focus of the firings , not the actual guilt or innocence of the accused. After the report was made of the rape you think the Coach did the right thing I guess. , and the report was made is the issue .

    Again , there is documents of those college officials involved being given to each other describing alledged rape or/and inappropriate touching . Plus reports where some of them even gave reports of “possible inapproriate appearance ” Thereape became possible inapproriate appearance . Thats incredible , the witness report regardless of gilt became possible inapproiate appearance , how can any one defend that translation of a rape accusation . They did not know for a fact it was true , just as if you were a teacher say , and a janitor came up to you and told you he saw a gym instructor molesting another child . You do not know if the janitor is telling the truth . But to tell the principle you were told that someone saw something unusual in the locker room instead of saying someone told you they witness molestation is quite a leap .

    The controversary in my opinion is what happened to that information afterwards . Was it brought to the attention satisfactorily to the appropriate authorities.

    No one denies that the report was made Mike . Th witnness stated he saw the rape in the Grand Jury . He now is saying he also contacted the police . But the fact is the officials knew , Coach knew of the allegations .

    If you are saying his actions after that fact are considered by you to be satisfactory with what he heard I guess we could agree to disagree.

    But defintely in the best interest of Penn State having him removed was more a business decission and something the college saw as best for the ability for the school to continue to remain a strong educational institution . I agree you disagree .

    Your right that this is a mess. Police records will show if the witness contacted the police . If they did nothing about it the controversary will become epidemic . But is this because the winess feels threatened with his future now because he is under the microscope also ?

  30. I guess I just don’t get it. I thought I lived in the USA where a person is innocent until proven guilty by a court of his peers. Also how can your fire someone who has been employed there for 60 years and has committed no crime except maybe alleged poor judgment. The media has crucified these people in the press and to me that is a crime……Sandusky guilty or innocent I don’t know, but he can ever get a fair trial. Jopa’s reputation and 60 years of good work is ruined. He will always be remembered for this scandal.

    This is not the USA I grew up in.

  31. Super fan you are not alone in your opinion . Regardless this is a tradegy.

    I do set a higher standard that go beyond legal ramifications of those in leadership , especially in cases like this . As I started my two cents , Coach is a highly respected man , has helped many young men pass througn on to man hood with be exposed to examples of virtues we all can admire , self sacrifice for the greater good, persistence , fairness , etc . I believe I am looking at the bigger picture .

    I thought the fact the kids came out in the next game and the opposing team also and cprayed for the victims showed a sign of class that obviously was mirrored to them by their coaches and peers .

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