“The glamorization of football and war lends to misguided metaphors,” wrote sports reporter Jason Shoot in the Spokane, Washington, Spokesman-Review. “Coaches are compared to generals and field marshals. Players are likened to hardened, battle-tested soldiers advancing through hostile territory. Dale Martin’s untimely death revealed a softer truth. Sometimes football coaches are just modest men with big hearts that break, and players too easily lauded as young men are merely boys, teenagers asked to make sense of a world that increasingly does not.”
Dale Martin was 18 years old when he died from a brain injury sustained during a high school football game in early April. The Colville High School senior was “the kind of kid who would always hold the door for you,” said his coach.