When St. Charles senior quarterback Lloyd Nash suffered a broken clavicle in the season opener at Chalmette, it appeared that his season and maybe that of the Comets was ruined.
Far from it.
After nearly two months of vigorous rehabilitation where he also demonstrated that his leadership qualities translated off the field as well, Nash returned to the Comets lineup in time to lead St. Charles to a pair of playoff victories and a win away from a repeat trip to the Mercedes Benz Superdome.
For his efforts, Nash has been named the 2017 recipient of the Nick Forsythe Courage Award. Forsythe, a St. Charles graduate himself (Class of '12) was on hand for the presentation along with Kelsey Tatje Jumonville representing Tatje Insurance and Financial Services, an original sponsor of Riverparishfootball.com.
“It means a lot especially coming from a former Comet,” said Nash. “It just shows that I'm thankful and blessed to still receive a courage award even though I was out for (most of) the season.”
The award is named after former St. Charles student manager/trainer Nick Forsythe who despite being diagnosed with juvenile dermatomyositis at the age of three, displayed courage, leadership, work ethic, and a positive attitude during his five years working with the Comets football program.
“It's a great honor, it shows that just by living my everyday life I'm inspiring other people,” said Forsythe. “It's good to read the stories of the people who are getting these trophies and see what kind of adversities they've overcome to get this trophy.”
Forsythe graduated from Nicholls State in May of 2017 with and accounting degree and is currently working for Frisard's Trucking Company in Gramercy.
“Lloyd stuck with the program and he was around the guys and encouraged them on the sidelines, he was really trying to help with the younger quarterbacks during that time,” said St. Charles coach Frank Monica. “But he came back because Lloyd is one of those guys, he's unselfish and he has that 'it' factor on the field. Whether it's football, baseball, he has this innate ability to make plays and I just hope he can carry that on in his future at Nicholls State.”
It was an espcially proud moment for Monica to have a St. Charles alumni hand the award to a current Comet.
“I think they both were integral parts of our program,” said Monica. “Nick only played one game for us because of his disability but he was an integral part. He always kept things straight for me on the sideline, in the locker room, and in the dressing room.
“The recepient of it (Nash) was a guy who came to us completely unknown and became just a great competitor and a guy who led us to the (Division III) State Championship (game in 2016)
He's also leading our baseball team right now. He's a guy that's been a quality guy, a quality student-athlete and exactly what exemplifies the ambassadorship of an SCC Comet.”
“It is so important for Tatje Insurance to be a sponsor of River Parish Football because the kids on these football teams are the future of our River Parishes,” said Tatje Jumonville. “With football there are potential scholarship opportunities, as well as giving the families something to do at all the games, and all the camaraderie that goes along with that.”
Nash has continued shining both on the field and as a leader for the Comets baseball team (20-8, 7-1). Playing centerfield and leading off, Nash is hitting .340, with 20 RBI, and is a perfect 36-36 on stolen base attempts. In fact, Nash has stolen 73 consecutive bases and for his career has a school record 119 stolen bases in 125 attempts.
“What makes Lloyd different in this day and age is that it's never been about him,” said St. Charles baseball head coach and football defensive coordinator Wayne Stein. “He has always put team and winning over individual accomplishments. Many kids would have sat out the whole year with his football injury, especially being a two-sport star. That never crossed his mind because it's never been about him. Nicholls State has signed a great one, in my opinion the best baseball player in St. Charles Catholic history.”
“My experience at St. Charles will definitely go down as the best time of my life,” said Nash. “Coming in and playing defense as a freshman, then stepping up as a sophomore (at quarterback) and winning Riverparishfootball.com Player of the Week (season opener at Thibodaux). I wouldn't change it for anything. Even though I got hurt I feel like I still got something out of it and I wouldn't change my time as a Comet for anything.”
Past winners of the Nick Forsythe Courage Award:
2016 Lowell Narcisse St. James
2014 Greg Joseph West St. John
2013 Jeff Russell East St. John
2012 Dez Broussard East St. John
*All trophies for Riverparishfootball.com came from Faber Awards. Since 1972, Faber Awards has been helping schools, churches, businesses and individuals recognize the best of the best in the greater New Orleans area. Located at 9127 Airline Highway in New Orleans, call Faber Awards at 504-821-5711.