Good Evening GF Hoops Family,
As many of you may have already heard, we have lost one of our own this week: Matt Poyner. Matt passed away unexpectedly in his sleep early Tuesday morning. Matt was a youth coach for us this season; he was helping to coach a 5th grade boys team. Additionally, he had also been a player with GF Hoops – both in the House and Select leagues - for many years.
Matt was a sophomore at Langley High School who was passionate about many things – including baseball and basketball. He was a young man of great intelligence tempered with a great empathy for everyone he met. Matt has been described to me as a young man with a “magnetic” personality; people were drawn to his optimism and love for life. Everyone who knew Matt loved Matt. He was dedicated to his studies, his family, baseball, and to the 5th grade team that he was coaching this season with one of his closest friends, Alex Ladd. He was also a believer in giving back to his community which is why he wanted to coach.
The Poyner Family is an integral part of the GF Hoops community as well as an integral part of the Great Falls community. Vern and Dawna, along with their sons Ryan, John, and Matt have been involved in GF Hoops for many, many years. They have supported us in the past with their volunteerism and now it is our turn to support them. While this loss is being felt profoundly throughout our community, it is being felt even more deeply by his family and large circle of close friends. So, on behalf of the GF Hoops Board, we ask that everyone keep the Poyner Family in your thoughts and prayers during this very difficult time.
Although Matt may no longer be with us, his legacy will live on in our community. I am very pleased to announce that the GF Hoops Board, with Vern and Dawna’s permission, has decided to name our Youth Leadership Scholarship in his honor. The Matthew Poyner Youth Leadership Scholarship will be awarded to 4 college-bound seniors at the upcoming 8th Grade Girls All Stars game on March 7.
Feel free to join us at that game to honor Matt, as well as 4 very-deserving high school seniors who, like Matt, feel a sense of service to community and who also understand that leadership comes from within.
Michelle Claude, Commissioner