Benefits for former RHS lax player Mauldin in his cancer fight
Roy Colsey says that coaches love coaching a player like Harrison Mauldin.
“He was willing to do whatever was asked of him. Pick up a long stick, pick up a short stick … Harrison did whatever we needed,” said Colsey, the head coach of the Ridgefield High boys lacrosse team. “He had a great attitude, a really great, positive attitude.”
Colsey believes the outlook will help Mauldin as he goes through a lengthy treatment process to combat lymphoblastic lymphoma, an aggressive and rare subtype of non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Mauldin, a 2013 Ridgefield High graduate, was diagnosed with the cancer in early March and is currently undergoing 10 months of chemotherapy, which will be followed by several years of monitoring and perhaps additional treatment.
“He’s a very, very bright kid,” said Colsey about Mauldin, who played lacrosse for two years at Bard College (Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y.) before leaving the school in 2016. “He’s a thinker, way beyond his years. I’m in awe of his attitude and determination and how he is taking this on.”
After learning of Mauldin’s diagnosis, Colsey reached out to former Ridgefield High players who are now competing in college. The players have responded by attaching Mauldin’s initials to the chinstraps of their helmets and then sending photos to Colsey, who has compiled them into a Helmets for Harrison awareness campaign.
“The alumni took that on themselves,” said Colsey about the use of the H.M. initials. “It’s great that they are showing a sign of support and sticking together. At least a dozen of them have sent photos of their helmets.”
Several benefit events have been designed to help Mauldin and his family defray the significant medical costs not covered by insurance. Before its final game of the season this past Saturday, the Bard College men’s lacrosse team warmed up in custom-designed T-shirts, which were on sale to the public as a fundraiser for the Mauldins. The Bard players also wore Mauldin’s initials on their helmets.
Colsey is working with Ridgefield Youth Lacrosse to plan two local benefits: A youth clinic run by current RHS players; and a Halftime for Harrison featuring youth teams playing one another at Tiger Hollow. The latter event is tentatively scheduled for halftime of Ridgefield’s home game against New Canaan on May 17.
“We want Harrison to be there, so we need to see when he is feeling up to it,” said Colsey, who has been in contact with Mauldin and his mom, Melanie.
In addition, Colsey has added Mauldin to the RHS boys lacrosse team’s post-game analysis effort. “Harrison is going to do some film work for us,” said Colsey. “He will be breaking down the defense and giving us his feedback.”
Notes: Melanie Mauldin has started a public Facebook page (Harrison’s Fight). An online campaign at YouCaring.com has so far raised more than $37,000 towards its goal of $75,000 for medical expenses.