BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - School leaders are remembering the former Stratford High School Knights running back and Live 5 Five-Star Player of the week who died Monday after a battle with cancer.
Xavier Young died Monday, according to Stratford Head Coach Dennie McDaniel. He was 22.
Stratford High School Principal Heather Taylor said Young emulated all of the qualities they strive for in a Stratford Knight.
“He was extremely dependable, motivated, humble, honest, and hardworking,” Taylor said. “He was a true leader among his peers. He had an infectious smile and was able to connect with all people. He truly cared about everyone. He will be greatly missed by all that knew him. Once a Knight, Always a Knight.”
“Xavier was a great football player for our program, but an even better person,” McDaniel said. “He is someone that every coach dreams of having a player like him. Every time I picture him all I see is that smile he had. That smile was so infectious! I know he is smiling down us now!”
“Xavier was a bright shining light in our school,” math teacher Meg Ward said. “His smile was unforgettable. He was kind and inspiring, courageous and brave. I will always remember his spirit. He is definitely one of Stratford’s finest to ever walk these halls.”
Coach John Chalus remembered him as a very friendly human being and a great Knight.
“His contagious smile warmed the hearts of many that were fortunate enough to know him,” he said. “He will be greatly missed.”
“Xavier Young epitomized what it meant to be a friend and teammate," Coach Ashley Harvey said. The genuine love and concern he showed on a daily basis was evident every day of his life. He was a hard worker, he was a great friend & teammate and never complained about anything! He met the challenge head on from day one like the champion we all know he was! He touched many lives and we are all better people for knowing Xavier Young! I have coached thousands of young people over the years, some maybe as good but none any better than Xavier!”
In September 2014, Live 5 News named Young the Live 5 Five-Star Player of the Week after Young rushed for 199 yards and four touchdowns helping the Knights take down previously-undefeated Ashley Ridge with a 49-14 win.
That victory helped his school move to 2-2 in the season.