Article by W. Clay Crook-
Friends, family, and former coaches met at the Lexington High School Gymnasium on Friday evening, October 15, 2021, to pay a tribute to Tyler Spann. After a prayer, they lined up to put the finishing touches on Tyler’s floragraph, which will be sent to California to be included on the Donate Life America float in the 2022 Rose Parade.
His mother, Angela Spann, greeted each attendee personally, and while working on the floragraph, each person had the opportunity to tell something personal about their relationship with Tyler.
Tyler was a local LHS athlete who became a tissue donor after his tragic death in 2018. He was only 15 years old, but had already touched the hearts of everyone in the Lexington community. His parents formed the Tyler Spann Foundation, not to just memorialize their son, but to memorialize Tyler while providing opportunities to others to be educated about water safety and acts of kindness. His death, through a rip-tide while on vacation, was a sad tragedy for everyone who knew him, but through his tissue donations other people live or have a better quality of life, and those educated through the foundation have a greater chance of staying alive on the water or saving a life themselves.
Two of the first in line to tell their stories about Tyler were Robbie Burke and Craig Bartel, who were Tyler’s first football coaches for the Packers, one of the four Henderson County Football League teams. “He made a touchdown the first time he touched the ball,” said Robbie Burke. “He ran 65 yards or more for the touchdown, no one could catch him.”
Waiting for the line to shorten, some of his other coaches sat together to exchange memories. Danny and Scottie Kizer, who have just retired from 24 years of local coaching, along with Johnathan Deberry, shared their memories of Tyler. “Tyler could fly across the field, that’s for sure,” Danny said. He was a natural talent on the field with a wonderful…
For the complete article, see the October 20th edition of The Lexington Progress.