(Coach Tim Criswell /courtesy Joe Garrett’s blog / 2014)
Spending a 30 plus career in one place, in one school,
affords a teacher the opportunity of sitting back and watching as a lot of
folks come and go…
An endless sea of students who come in in the 9th grade in order to “serve”
their four years only to then pass through and on come graduation.
Some students will stay all four years while some will not…for a myriad of reasons.
There are also a lot of personnel changes that take place within a school
as folks transfer, move or change careers…
With the front doors of the school becoming almost like a revolving door for change…
Because in a school, nothing stays the same for very long.
Which is just part and parcel of life, the cycle of learning, moving and growing.
I was fortunate in that I worked in a small city school system.
I was the art teacher for 30 plus years at the city system high school.
Our school system employs a lot of former students as well as community members who
have lived in Carrollton or in Carroll County all their lives.
I was actually the outsider all those many years ago.
I was afforded the gift of meeting and working with a wealth of varied individuals.
Some of whom came and went in due time while others stayed, as I did…
forging a lifetime of teaching on one single campus and within one single school.
Those who do such, staying in one place for so very long, find that they actually
become the extended family of their colleagues.
As one actually spends more waking hours with fellow educators than with
one’s own family.
I remember when a new wet behind the ears, fresh out of college, young man
was hired to coach basketball.
At our school football was a long established dynasty…a well known program
throughout not only the state but throughout the entire nation as state titles were collected like Easter eggs and players went on to the NFL…
while basketball was only a mere footnote.
His name was Tim Criswell..and like so many other employees, Tim was also a graduate
of his new employer.
I won’t go into the details of his now near 30 year career…
I won’t talk about the persevering and hard work that has garnered awards, titles
and a wealth of accolades all of which “Coach” has managed to bring to the house of Trojan.
Because accolades and titles mean nothing when you consider the countless number of
lives of an army of young men who have been made the better because they played
under and worked alongside “Coach”
For Tim is a man of great integrity and conviction.
A man who any parent would want as an influence as well as role model for their child.
Tim is now in the final years of a long successful career of both coaching and
He and his wife Dawn are looking forward to his retirement.
Saturday morning Tim and Dawn were out riding bikes on the new Green Belt that
circles the city of Carrollton—a 17 mile loop providing a place for walking,
running and riding bikes.
What exactly happened is still a bit unclear but there was an accident.
A serious accident.
Tim had to be life flighted to Atlanta’s Grady Hospital’s trauma unit with
broken ribs, a punctured lung and severe head trauma.
He is currently heavily sedated as the medical team works to keep the pressure
in the brain from swelling beyond what is considered to be safe numbers
as the pressure is fluctuating like a see saw of up and down.
They are holding off on needed surgeries due to the fluctuating pressure.
They are debating putting a plate in for one of the ribs,
meshes to help stop blood clots from traveling from the legs to the lungs
as well as surgeries to alleviate the cranial pressure.
He has developed a fever and pneumonia and is currently being given antibiotics.
I am asking for you to please join me for prayers for Tim, Dawn and
their three sons.
Dawn reported last night on the CaringBridge update page that one of the doctors is apparently a strong Believer who told her that the specific prayer currently
needed is for the pressure in the brain to back off….
So I am in turn humbly asking that you all will join me by adding Tim to your list
of those for whom you pray.
I ask that we join together..in turn asking our Omnipotent Father to draw ever
closer to Dawn and the boys as He wraps His arms around Tim’s battered body.
I ask that there will be healing for Tim’s broken and bruised body
as well as for Dawn’s anxious heart.
I’ll will provide updates or you may visit the CaringBridge site to register in order
to read the updates.