By Nathan Summers
Friday, September 28, 2012
Chaz Lowery is a lifesaver in the truest sense. In the football sense, he hopes to bring new life to the East Carolina Pirates.
Just a redshirt freshman at ECU, Lowery knows pressure on a level that most of his teammates and classmates could not comprehend. Before he came to college, Lowery was witness to some life-changing events as a high school student, a volunteer rescue squad member and a teenager with remarkable motivation.
The Virginia Beach, Va., native — who during his senior season at Ocean Lakes High School organized an annual event in honor of his late father — has a perspective on life that few do.
“My last call before I went back to spring ball, I was able to revive a 28-year-old dad of two with another one on the way,” Lowery said of his work with the Virginia Beach Memorial Hospital’s emergency room and rescue squad. “Right before I walked out of the hospital room he said, ‘Thank you, because I don’t know what my wife would have done.’ That was pretty emotional for me, just taking a second to stop and realize that what I do has that big of an impact.”
According to Lowery, a budding offensive lineman/tight end who has become a part of the Pirates’ jumbo package on close running plays, the patient he saved had flat-lined and been pronounced dead.
If Lowery can handle that, he most certainly can handle making the adjustment to being either a full-time member of the Pirates’ front line or a tight end in big packages.
Lowery loves the fact he’s getting playing time at all outside of special teams.
“It’s a great opportunity, not only to get experience on the field but also to keep making gains in the weight room, and mentally on the field,” the 6-foot-5, 280-pound Lowery said. “It’s a great opportunity to be able to travel with the team and be with the guys, and just play by play to be there on the sidelines with them and get that game experience when I’m called on.”
Getting called on is something Lowery said his father helped him to embrace. He said his dad — a former high school coach and teacher who lost a fight with lymphoma and inspired Lowery to organize the Coach Lowery Cross Country Bash — taught him to be active in every way.
“He was a big proponent in getting involved in your community and making a difference,” Lowery said of his late father, Ed. “I really do enjoy being there for people when they need you. It’s a great feeling to not only represent this team, but also my community back home.”
People have noticed. Lowery was named to the WAVY-TV Hampton Roads Young Achiever List, which recognizes young people who exhibit excellent character, community and school involvement and wise use of leisure time.
It’s likely Lowery will become more visible inside Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium, where the Pirates will host UTEP at 7 o’clock on Saturday night, and in the Greenville community.
One thing he and the ECU coaching staff still must decide is where Lowery can best serve the team.
“It’s something I think I’m still figuring out,” he said. “I’m extremely comfortable in the tight end spot, and I did play that some in high school, and I’m also getting comfortable at tackle. I think my size will play a role in it. I need to figure out whether I need to go up or down (in weight), and that’s just part of your growing in college. We’ll figure that out.”
Contact Nathan Summers at firstname.lastname@example.org or 252-329-9595.
via The Daily Reflector.