Jim Ware will be remembered by those who knew him as a great teacher on and off the softball field.The Broadneck coach died Saturday morning. He was 62.
"He had touched many, many young lives," said his son, Patrick Ware. "Every former player of his that I ever talked to had the greatest praise for him because he cared for them both on and off the field. I look back as a father now and he set an example of how to raise my children, and I'm thankful for that."
Ware woke up Saturday morning with chest pain. His daughter, Elizabeth, took him to Anne Arundel Medical Center, where he died soon afterward. Doctors think the cause of death was a blood clot in the lung, Patrick Ware said.
Jim Ware coached varsity softball at Broadneck for 11 years and had been involved in coaching in the Broadneck community for 24 years. He guided the Bruins to an 18-4 record and the No. 3 ranking in The Sun last season. His teams won back-to-back Anne Arundel County championships and were Class 4A East Regional finalists the past two seasons. He built Broadneck into a yearly state championship contender.
"He was just absolutely committed to the development and to the betterment of our softball program," said Ken Kazmarek, Broadneck's athletic director. "He was a tireless worker. There was not a day that I drove by that field that he wasn't on the field coaching or working."
Ware, a retired Marine, had recently obtained his teaching certification. He taught math at South River the past school year and was planning to teach in Broadneck's new technology department in the coming year.
For Ware, the most important thing was working with and helping kids.
"Jim never made it about him. It was always about the kids having a good experience," Kazmarek said.
"He was a great mentor, and he wanted what was best for his girls."
A memorial service, which will be open to the public, will be held tomorrow night at 6:30 in the Broadneck gymnasium. Those attending are encouraged to wear the Broadneck colors, maroon and gray.
Mr. Ware is survived by his son, Patrick, 29, and his daughter, Elizabeth, 27, both Broadneck graduates; his stepfather, Frank Dochnel, 89, of St. Louis; and two grandchildren, Brooke, 3, and August, five weeks.