My Memory of Coach Celie


For the past 3 years, I’ve helped out the basketball team by becoming the team manager. Last year, Coach Celie Ulm came up to me after one of the basketball games and asked if I could help out the volleyball team. I didn’t even hesitate to say yes because I’ve played volleyball for 5 years, and I knew the sport well enough to be the volleyball manager and help out as much as I could. Little did I know that this would be one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. This year, I went to all the home and some away volleyball games keeping score for the junior varsity team. I was able to work with Coach Celie while she taught me how to do the scorebook.

As the season was coming closer to an end, I knew that Senior Night was in October. Being a senior and not wanting to be called out for being a manager, I was terrified of this night. Previously, I told Coach Celie that I did not want to be recognized because I felt like I was taking the night away from the senior volleyball players who worked so hard for this night. She relentlessly tried to bribe me into walking across the court for Senior night but I strongly declined. I told her that I didn’t want to be recognized but she had other plans. That night after all the volleyball senior girls had been called out, I heard my name being called out over the speakers. I was absolutely terrified but I saw Coach Celie walking toward me with a big smile on her face as she gave me a gift and told me “you deserve to be recognized.” Her words have stuck with me, and I believe that this memory of mine speaks to how kind, caring, and generous of a person Coach Celie was to everyone.

Coach Celie never failed to push me out of my comfort zone and brighten my day. She offered comfort and encouragement whenever she saw me down. She is one of the most incredible women that I’ve ever met, and I encourage anyone reading this to live out each day like she did.