â€śI’m overwhelmed and so proud to have been a part of my school. I’m just overwhelmed by all of thisâ€ť
And it could be easily said that Ancilla College was overwhelmed by Emmons as well, honoring him before a capacity crowd at the LifePlex on Monday, Jan. 10 in between the womenâ€™s and menâ€™s basketball games.Â A video montage was shown in his honor, followed by the award presentation.
Emmons was presented with both the â€śCharger Awardâ€ť â€“ honoring him for his tireless dedication and generosity towards Ancilla College athletics â€“ and the National Junior College Athletic Association Region 12 â€śReal Sport Awardâ€ť, an award given to individuals who contribute to junior college athletics outside of the game.
â€śWe were happy to be able to give our first ‘Charger Award’ to a person that sets the example for what this award is supposed to mean,â€ť said Ancilla College Athletic Director Gene Reese. â€śSimply, what more could you do for the college? He’s done so much for the baseball program, for the basketball program â€“ he’s done things for the college. We’re really proud to present this award to Dennis.â€ť
The effect he has had on Ancilla College athletics and the local community was truly evident, as the LifePlex ran out of parking spaces for those in attendance.Â Many were forced to park at a nearby shopping center due to the overwhelming attendance.
Reese presented Emmons with the Charger Award while Assistant Athletic Director and Womenâ€™s Basketball Coach Dave Liverance presented Emmons with the Real Sport Award.
Furthermore, the College erected a permanent picture plaque dedicated to Emmons on walls of Charger Arena at the LifePlex.
It would be hard to find a student athlete at Ancilla College who has not been touched in some way by Emmons, who created the schools male athletic â€śresidence hallâ€ť – The Pointe â€“ and has used his influence to provide guidance to many young men during their first stay away from home. His support of the athletic programs at the college has been instrumental in making sure Ancilla athletes graduate and head on to further their educations.
Â â€śI’ve received so much more from these athletes than I’ve ever given to them,â€ť said Emmons.Â â€śI just feel so humbled and proud of whatever I’ve been able to do to help these young men.â€ť
A graduate of Plymouth High School and Ancilla College, Emmons has been a key figure in many capacities. His support of Ancilla athletics has been constant since his days at the school, when he was a member of the menâ€™s basketball club team.
â€śI want to highlight the (athletics) program and challenge other Ancilla alums to become ambassadors or adopt the other Charger teams,â€ť said Emmons of his involvement. â€śIf each sport had an alumnus helping them, supporting them, and getting to know the guys and gals in our programs, they would get just as much out of their involvement as they put in to their volunteering. This is my ministry.Â I truly get attached to these guys and my reward is a relationship with them that is life long.â€ť
Emmons was reluctant to accept the honor at first but decided to do so after getting some advice.
â€śI decided that I would accept the honor after I got some feedback from Joe Yonto (Ancilla College Head Baseball Coach) and Dave Liverance,â€ť he said.Â â€śIf we can shed some light on the great work of our Ancilla College coaches and Gene Reese, then why not?â€ť
Ancilla College is a Catholic, two-year, co-educational, liberal arts college in Donaldson, Indiana sponsored by the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ.
Photo (L to R): Ancilla College Athletic Director Gene Reese and Dennis Emmons.