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Scholarship honors former teacher, coach

For Donald Nave, sports at South Carroll High School was a passion.

During his 11 years as a teacher there, he coached football and baseball. Even when he left teaching, he remained an unofficial coach at the school and attended nearly all South Carroll football, baseball and lacrosse games.

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Mr. Nave's commitment to South Carroll sports endures -- a scholarship was established in his name after he was killed at age 51 in a car accident near his Taylorsville home in March.

The $4,000 scholarship was awarded at South Carroll's graduation in June to Michael O'Connell, now a freshman at Fordham University in New York.

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To sustain the scholarship, Mr. Nave's friends and family decided to begin an annual golf tournament in his honor.

The tournament, held in September at Piney Branch Golf Course in Hampstead, raised $5,000, most of which will go toward next year's scholarship.

The Naves plan to put some of the money into a trust fund so that the scholarship eventually can become self-sustaining.

"It'll keep his memory alive for a lot of people," said Mr. Nave's wife, Judy. "Of course, I can't imagine how anybody could forget him. He really filled up a room."

Mr. Nave taught at South Carroll from 1964 to 1975. Although he left education to go into the real estate business, he continued to exert a strong influence on South Carroll athletics.

He was a fixture at school sporting events.

"No matter what the event was, Dad was always down at the high school," said Mr. Nave's son, Brian, 28, a 1984 South Carroll graduate who was quarterback on the school's football team.

Brian's brother, Christopher, 19, a sophomore at Lynchburg College in Virginia, played football and lacrosse at South Carroll and graduated in 1993.

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"It's not like he just went to our games," Brian said. "He went to everybody's games."

Mr. Nave also took on the project of raising $20,000 to $25,000 to build a new press box at South Carroll, to go with the school's new stadium.

"He single-handedly went out and got people to contribute money," said Fred Baker, the athletic director at South Carroll High.

The idea for starting the scholarship took root when Tom Luster, a student at South Carroll, learned that Mr. Nave had died in the car crash.

Mr. Nave's pickup swung wide from Braddock Road onto Route 27 and into the path of a tractor-trailer that was unable to stop.

Tom, 17, who was then a junior at South Carroll, asked to be excused from his English class to call his mother.

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"He was quite moved by the loss and said he [Mr. Nave] can't just die and go away," Karen Luster said of her son's reaction to Mr. Nave's death.

Her son's statement encouraged Ms. Luster to look into starting a scholarship in Mr. Nave's name.

Within 10 days, $4,000 was donated to the scholarship fund, said Mrs. Nave, who owns the Forget-Me-Not shop in Westminster.

"It was evident how many kids he had touched by the numbers that showed up at the funeral home," Brian Nave said of his father.

"It's hard for kids at that age to come to something like that."

Ms. Luster said Mr. Nave encouraged her son Tom to develop his athletic abilities and also attended the recreation league games of her younger son, Chris, 13.

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"He was always looking out for me no matter what I did," said Tom.

Next year's fund-raising golf tournament for the Donald Nave scholarship will be held Aug. 21 at Piney Branch Golf Course.



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