Jonathon Yaws Inspires Football Team

The most important part of the team may not always start the game and, in some cases, may not even play.

Sophomore Johnathan Yaws is one of two football managers. However, according to head football coach Josh Line, Yaws is more than just a manager.

“Making Johnathan manager was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” Line said.

According to junior James Miranda, a running back and defensive back on the football team, Yaws wants to be out there playing more than anyone.

Yaws is unable to play football due to the undiagnosed physical barriers he faces. He struggles with walking and communication but has been improving after having multiple surgeries.

“You should just be happy you can play even if you don’t start,” Miranda said.

According to Line, Yaws does a lot more than just fill up water bottles.

“My favorite thing about Johnathan is that he brings a positive spirit to practice every day,” Line said.

Line said he has learned a lot from Yaws, and Yaws has learned a lot from Line.

“He gets really excited when a good play happens. He is always cheering for us,” Line said. “You can hear him all the time. He will even laugh at us when we make mistakes, and it’s good, it keeps us humble.”

According to Miranda, Yaws cares more about the team than anyone else and is a very important part of the team.

Every Thursday night before a game, the varsity football team gathers for a team dinner and on Oct. 16, the night before the South Umpqua game, and the day before Yaws’ 16th birthday, the team made a cake for him and sang “Happy Birthday.” The next day at the South Umpqua game, Marshfield won with a 21-20 victory. After the victory, the team got into a huddle and junior Ben Martin yelled, “Happy Birthday, Johnathan,” and the entire team followed.

According to Yaws’ mother Jeanette Yaws, it was the best birthday present he could ever ask for.

Special education teacher Kayla Crook said she looks forward to Yaws coming to class every day because he always has a smile on his face and brings joy to the room.

“He is a hard worker and is a great kid we, “Crook said.” we love every day that we have with him,” said Crook.

According to Crook, Yaws is an inspiration and makes people re-evaluate their motives because he faces many barriers, but yet is still filled with joy every day.

“We really love having him be a part of our team,” Line said.  “I am looking forward to him continuing on with us throughout the rest of his high school career.”