OKLAHOMA CITY – A community in northeast Oklahoma City is trying to find a way to carry on a legacy after a beloved coach’s sudden passing.
The little league football coach’s legacy stretched far beyond the field.
Football, to some, is just a sport.
To others, it’s a time for growth, a time for bonding.
For the members of the Impact 11 & Under team – it’s everything.
“We’re not out here just trying to play football,” said coach Victor Thompson. “We’re out here trying to teach these young men how to become men.”
It’s a lesson kids, coaches, parents and his family say no one taught better than David Pollard.
“He truly, truly believed in making an impact, that the name of this organization is more than just a name,” said Pollard’s girlfriend Kelli White.
White says the loving father coached the boys for years until he was diagnosed with colon cancer.
Just a month and a half later, the coach, who was only in his 40’s, passed away.
“It hurt us all – parents, kids, friends from around the world, you know?” Thompson said.
He lives on, though, through his impact both on and off the field.
“He was a wonderful coach,” said Xavier Thompson, who played for Pollard. “He taught us a lot of stuff. He taught us discipline.”
“Help the kids get here, help them become better men because many of them have single-parent homes,” Victor Thompson said.
Giving everyone a chance – no matter their circumstances.
“Some kids live in a neighborhood where they can’t afford to play but they love the game and they wanted to play, and he made a way to make sure that everybody could play,” said Toya Martin, whose son played for Thompson.
Now, they’re working on moving forward.
“He was a very good head coach and I wish he could still be here with us as we continue this journey of the year,” said Braylon Taylor who played for Thompson.
The community is hoping to find a way to keep his legacy alive, helping one child at a time.
“They meant the world to him, the world to him,” White said. “It’s been a rough passage but family is everything and that’s why the back of their jerseys say ‘family.'”
The families are now collecting donations to make sure all kids get the chance to play, continuing Pollard’s mission.
You can donate via the Cash App through $Impact11uFootball or reach out to them on Facebook.
The family also wants to raise awareness for colon cancer in Pollard’s name.