Delaware County family helps 33 students get scholarships after son killed in crash
by Haley Nelson
DELAWARE, Ohio — There was a ceremony Monday night to celebrate Big Walnut High School students in Sunbury getting college scholarships.
But this year, there was special emotion in this crowd.
"Every day for us is difficult, of course," said mom Jane Young.
Her son Mitchell Young was 16-years-old when he died in a car crash on his way to football practice. It was July of 2016.
This year the student athlete would have been a senior.
"This is a class with his best friends," said his mom.
His family decided to put together a scholarship fund. His mom says they helped 8 kids in the past through the foundation.
"If we could only leave a legacy like he did at a young age, I'll be proud," she said, "so, he's our hero."
But this year, more than 30 students applied, and Mitchell's parents, Jane and Craig, made a decision to fund a scholarship for every single one of those students.
"For me, it's just the kids and how they've made us feel like he's gone, but not forgotten, right?" she said.
That's about $40,000 raised by Young's parents through charity corn hole tournaments, and with help.
"The community has been behind us since day one," said Young.
The impact is being felt across the community.
"This is something that has come around from something that was just an awful thing to happen," said Warren Cox, Treasurer of the Big Walnut Education Foundation, "to 33 young men and women that are going to be thinking about him, going to school, you know, it is going to mean a lot."
For his classmates, getting the scholarship is an honor, in their friend's memory.
"One thing that I always remember about Mitchell is his great smile and just how happy he was all the time," said friend and scholarship recipient Trevor Ambrose, "and I try to remember that and feed off that. So, that inspires me day-to-day."
Young's parents say he's left a legacy, encouraging organ donation, safe driving and the power of community.