by Bruce Strand, Sports editor
It was with heavy hearts that Elk River-Rogers-Zimmerman’s Nordic Ski teams competed Wednesday at their conference meet.
They had learned Tuesday of the death of a teammate, senior Nick Jarpey.
“We found out yesterday, and brought the team together,” said coach Kirsten Anderson.
There was no school Tuesday due to the cold weather but the team had planned a get-together to socialize and wax their ski’s. Instead they reflected on the tragic news.
“We have fantastic parents, and fantastic school staff, so we had a lot of support,” said Anderson. “There is no way to prepare for something like this.”
Despite the shocking news, the team had to resume its preparation.
“We had to pull together as a team,” said the coach, “and focus on small tasks that we have to get done.”
Breck Hickman, one of the Elks’ all-conference skiers in the meet at Theodore Wirth Park, said it was difficult to compete.
“I wasn’t feeling super great today,” he said. “Because of the the events from yesterday. It takes lot of energy to deal with that. It’s hard to concentrate on skiing when something that big happens.”
Hickman related that he was good friends with Jarpey.
“He was a fun guy. A good guy. He always made you smile. One of the best kids I knew.”
Cause of the death was not discussed. The Star News did not receive a report other than what was stated at the skiing meet. One of the parents informed the Star News.
An obituary posted in the Star Tribune stated that Jarpey, 18, is survived by parents Monica and Greg; brothers Jonathan and Aaron; sister Maija; grandparents Michael and Pam Lemanczik; and aunts, uncles, cousins and a host of friends. The funeral will be held Saturday, 3 p.m., at Apostolic Lutheran Church in Blaine. Evans-Nordby Funeral Home is handling the funeral.