Ray Rice to host anti-bullying, teen suicide prevention outreach

I am pleased that Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice will soon be here for an anti-bullying forum. Called A Ray of Hope, the forum will be held in the Howard High School auditorium on Saturday, May 5 from 3 to 5 p.m. Howard County General Hospital is one of the sponsors.

Each attendee needs a ticket, which are available through school guidance counselors. One parent/guardian must accompany each student to this town hall-style meeting that County Council member Calvin Ball is helping host.

Rice and other professional athletes, community leaders throughout the country and newspapers are stepping up their anti-bullying campaigns. That's the good news.

The fact that we need an anti-bullying campaign is the bad news. A recent report that I saw claimed that there have been thousands of bullying incidents within the Maryland Public School System.

The recent death of a Glenelg student has awakened us to the dangers that some of our young and vulnerable face. Face-to-face bullying is bad enough, but now we have to contend with cyber bullying, which is a world unto itself.

I applaud Mr. Rice and all those addressing the problem. We have to stamp down hard on this type of hooliganism. If a student dies and other students are found to be involved, they deserve more than a slap on the wrist. Enough is enough.

Ward at Reed's HOF event

One of Howard High School's Hall of Famers Mike Ward was in Miami on March 29 for Ed Reed's induction into the University of Miami's Hall of Fame. Mike graduated from Howard High in 1973 after a stellar running career there. In 1992, he became the University of Miami's assistant track and cross country coach and then the Hurricanes' head coach in 1998.

Mike, an Elkridge resident when he lived in Howard County, was Reed's college track coach along with NFL stars Reggie Wayne, Mike Rumph and Delvin Brown. After a highly successful college coaching career which spanned 16 years, Mike retired in 2008. He currently lives in Catonsville.

One summer, I attended one of Mike's running sessions at Howard High School. It was fascinating. He actually teaches you how to run. I thought I knew how to run until I learned from the best.

Congratulations, Gene

Gene Brown, athletic and activities manager at Marriotts Ridge High School, was recently inducted into the Carroll County Sports Hall of Fame. Before coming to Marriotts Ridge, Gene taught and coached football and lacrosse at South Carroll High School. His football teams went 63-60 and won the county championship three times. He was named Coach of the Year six times and, in 2003, the Baltimore Ravens picked him as Coach of the Year for the region.

In lacrosse, Gene's teams went 139-56 and won eight county titles, matching the number of Coach of the Year honors he earned in the sport.

Zabel gets assist record

James Madison University senior Monica Zabel (Mt. Hebron) is having a record-setting year for the Dukes, who lost to Towson, 10-9, in double overtime over the weekend to finish second in the CAA. Monica had two goals and two assists in the game, moving her even higher on the JMU career list. She became the school's all-time assist leader April 15 with her 110th and 111th career assists. She has 43 assists on the season, which ties her for fifth in the NCAA Division I statistics.

Ironically, No. 4 on the NCAA list is Ohio State's Alayna Markwordt. The Glenelg graduate has 44 assists.

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