Cumberland Times-News

Opinion

March 9, 2013

Thanks to Hooley Plungers

On March 2 at Rocky Gap State Park, 900 special people “plunged” for special reasons.

Jake Reynolds, our World Special Olympics Gold medalist and Hooley Plunge King plunged to thank all his supporters.

Jake and Doug Schwab turned a $5,000 challenge into $10,000. Michael Nelson plunged for the Cumberland Rotary and helped them raise over $10,000 for our local developmentally disabled.

Skip Miller and Darren Bosley plunged for their daughters Chelsea and Cheyane. Mike Calhoun and Steve Wilson plunged as principals for Allegany and South Penn schools.

Officer Dave “I love the Steelers” Broadwater, lost a bet, raised over $1,000 for Cumberland Outdoor Club, and wore a Baltimore Ravens jersey with his head painted purple into the Plunge! So many teachers and students from the Allegany County public schools went in that I can’t name or thank them all. Everyone had their special reasons for doing the Plunge!

While everyone complains about taxes, sequesters, gas prices and the cost of living everyone year they still come together to support Allegany County Special Olympics and our local developmentally disabled.

The Allegany, Fort Hill, Mountain Ridge, Career Center, Bishop Walsh and Calvary High School students led the way for all their feeder schools.

Braddock, Mount Savage, Washington and Westmar Middle Schools led the way for all the elementary schools. Beall, Bel Air, Cash Valley, Westernport, Cresaptown, Flintstone, Frost, Georges Creek, John Humbird, Northeast, Parkside, South Penn and West Side all had teachers and students who “pledged or plunged”

Ask any student in Allegany County public schools why they plunged and they will all tell you they did it for special reasons. They did it for their special “best buddies” or for SHOP, Students Helping Other People.

They plunged to support the kids they go to school with. They did it for Inclusion Sports, Special Olympics in our high schools. They did it for their classmates and friends. They did it because they care.

Dr. Cox, the Allegany County public schools superintendent, won the “Chazz Offutt Community Service Award” for the 9th Annual Hooley Plunge.

He led the way for all the teachers, staff and students in the school system. He also helped raise awareness all month long leading up to the Plunge. All the county schools were well represented.

Bishop Walsh came out strong with their whole basketball team plunging together, from first grade to 12th they went in as a Sea of Burgundy.

There were waves of Roll Tide Red, Royal Blue, Black and Red Miners, and Calvary Blue. Rivals 364 out of 365 plunging together one day a year. The Fort Hill, Allegany and Mountain Ridge Cheerleaders led us in a group Hooley Plunge Cheer and marked our thermometer up over $100,000 together.

When the last plunger came out we had over $111,000.00 and still collecting! That’s excellent community service from our students and their mentors. Job well done!

A special thanks to Rocky Gap Lodge & Golf Resort who made us feel very at home Friday night for the Shanty Irish Pre-Freeze party as well as the Saturday morning Pre-Plunge Breakfast.

The Army of Alhambra did an outstanding job once again. Registering 900 Plungers in three hours. Feeding the hungry and trying to keep everyone as warm as possible. Alhambra’s Brad Stafford won the Hooley Plunge Unsung Hero award for the “Millions” of things he does all year to run the Plunge.

There is no way to properly thank everyone who helped. To our sponsors and challenge leaders thank you. No matter how cold it is. No matter how wet we get.

We all still do it for our own special reasons. Thanks to everyone who plunged or pledged. Thank you 111,000 times.

Sean McCagh

2013 Hooley Plunge chairman

Cumberland

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