STEVE HANLON: '4M' is forever in the Terry family

2014-04-18T17:00:00Z 2014-04-18T22:16:22Z STEVE HANLON: '4M' is forever in the Terry familySteve Hanlon Prep Beat nwitimes.com
April 18, 2014 5:00 pm  • 

MERRILLVILLE | The Easter weekend is celebrated all over the planet. Families and individuals gather to give thanks, embrace and remember the key tenants of their faith.

Life is first. It is followed by death, certain. Which is followed by life, everlasting, again.

There aren't enough chocolate bunnies or pink eggs to burn out that cornerstone.

Andrean senior baseball catcher Patrick Terry plans on spending this holiday taking in every aspect of the occasion. His mother, Cheri Terry, has always been his No. 1 fan.

She used to come to the 59ers' practices in Andrean gear, to support her son. She was the loudest voice in the bleachers. Her love was not misguided. She loved every kid on the team.

Cheri has not been to a game in two years. The Portage mother was stricken with ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease. She now waits for Patrick to come home from school, practice or games to ask questions about what went on.

She needs a computer to communicate.

"Family is the No. 1 thing I pay attention to," Patrick said. "I don't have much time to do what a regular kid does. I help my father (Kevin Terry) with my mom."

This is not a laborious issue for Patrick. His love for his mother can roll away any stone.

"If she thought an ump missed a call she would let him know," Patrick said with a laugh. "She was always there in the front row. She was always there supporting me, pulling for me.

"So it's my time to return the love."

Andrean coach Dave Pishkur has been amazed by this family, and his. The 59ers family has opened their hearts and arms to the Terrys. Bringing food to the home. Helping out in many ways, including just stopping by to share in conversation.

It isn't unusual at this Catholic school. Faith and family are two hands touching at the top of a chapel ceiling.

"This puts everything in perspective," Pishkur said. "I always tell the guys, 'Compared to what?' So you struck out three times today. We have enough trouble in the world that not having success in a game isn't that important.

"Compared to what?"

Andrean is not handcuffed by the politics of the day. The idea of God is not shoved out the school door by the armed politically correct police. Faith is embraced, as is this weekend.

After every 59ers game the team says a prayer. That helps in games. It is much more supportive in life. The good. The bad. The rest.

"I hope the four years of religion the kids get here, the prayers at the start and the end of each day, made a difference in their lives," Pishkur said. "I believe that it does. This is a good culture to be in.

"Especially with the society and everything that's going on in it right now."

Patrick Terry put "4M" on every baseball equipment he owns. It stands for "For Mom." It will be on everything in their home on Easter, a day that causes celebration no matter what is going on in people's lives.

"I owe everything to my mom," Patrick said. "Every time I step out on the ball field, I'm doing it for her. She's always been there for me. I love her so much."

It's a great weekend to roll away the stone. Do it with your loved ones and let them know they are loved.

This column solely represents the writer's opinion. Reach him at steve.hanlon@nwi.com.

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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