April 20

Below is Dyrick Mcdermott’s Obituary in today’s Chronicle Herald.

Dyrick Mcdermott, 40, passed away unexpectedly on April 17, 2009. Born July 14, 1968, he was the son of Dyrick McDermott (Germaine) and the late Barbara (Sims) McDermott. He was a devoted and loving husband and father to his wife Jeanette and their two children Chloe and Haydn. Dyrick was recognized regionally and nationally for his contributions first as a player then as a head coach in Varsity basketball. He brought the same passion and commitment to volunteer coaching and working with troubled youth at the IWK. For the past 10 years he was a dedicated counselor to the children of the IWK’s CRP Program. Many of Dyrick’s varsity players valued him as a respected mentor and friend and remained in contact even after graduation. At Mount Saint Vincent where Dyrick served with distinction going on 8 years as Athletics Recreation Assistant and Women’s Basketball Coach, the flag on campus was lowered in his memory on the day he died. Dyrick entered Mount Saint Vincent as a student and basketball recruit in 1989, graduating in 1994 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. He kicked off his career as head coach of the women’s varsity basketball team at the University of Kings College. During his stay at Kings he and his team won more than 100 games and he was named ACAA Coach of the year three times. He moved to Mount Saint Vincent Athletics Department in 2001 where he continued his record of outstanding achievement. As a player Dyrick won three ACAA Championships and won bronze in CCAA Championship play. As a coach he won 5 ACAA Championships; Silver at CCAA championships in 2008; was recognized 6 times as ACAA Coach of the year; was recognized in 2007 as CCAA Coach of the year for women’s basketball; held level 111 certification, and coached and volunteered with numerous leagues. In his 13 years as a player and coach, wins and losses were important to Dyrick, but he believed the experiences his student athletes gained while playing basketball were more important. He hoped that the will, desire and commitment displayed on the basketball court would translate and spillover into everyday life as a gift to earn and have forever. In addition to his father, Dyrick; wife, Jeanette (Murray) McDermott and children, Chloe and Haydn, Dyrick is survived by sisters, Lieann (Donald Hornsby) McDermott, Halifax; Shawnette (McDermott) and James McNeil, Yellowknife; brother, Duke, Halifax; and loving in-laws and nieces and nephews. Visitation will be in Snow’s Funeral home Monday at 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Funeral mass will be held in St. Agnes Church, Tuesday, at 1 p.m., celebrated by Father John Williams, concelebrated by Father Lloyd O’Neill. A reception will follow in the Multi-Purpose Room at the Rosaria Centre, Mount Saint Vincent University. Donations may be made to the Dyrick McDermott Memorial Endowed Leadership Award at Mount Saint Vincent University. On-line condolences can be sent to: condolences.snow@ns.aliantzinc.ca

I was not a friend of Dyrick Mcdermott, but I wish I had been. I have a feeling my life would have been that much more richer. Although, if I had been, this weekend would have been even more heart breaking than I already found it.
I met Coach a few months ago when he agreed to let me do a story on his women’s basketball team at MSVU. Not only was he courteous and helpful, he was a great interview. Over the winter he bacame a regular on my CKDU sports show and always gave me great insight and thoughtful opinions.
I found out about Coach’s death on friday just before I went to work that night. Concentrating on my job was very difficult, and as I went from emotion to emotion, thought to thought, I realized how hard his death must be for people who actually called him a coach, friend, father or husband.
This guy was a great man. A far better man than me, and probably a better man then most of us. His death is tragic and sad, and a lesson for all of us to enjoy every day we have on this planet, and make the most of it. Because at any moment, it could all come to an end.

Jays Perched Atop AL East
If you’re looking at the AL east standings today, you may be tempted to email the site and tell them they are upside down. They don’t. The Jays are in first place, followed by Baltimore.
The Orioles will probably come back to earth as spring turns into summer, but the Jays could be here to stay. They have arguably the best defence in the major leagues and a middle of the pack pitching staff that should get better as the season progresses, led of course by Doc Halladay. But it’s the bats that have been the Jays key to success thus far. Toronto leads the majors in batting average (.296!!), hits (141), rbi’s (80), and runs scored (86). Even Lyle Overbay is hitting the ball. He’s got a .290 average and he hit a walk off home run vs the A’s on saturday.

Who would have thought the signing of Kevin Millar would be so instrumental for the Jays. Millar brings some punch to the plate, he’s a professional hitter, and he plays a pretty decent first base. More importantly, he may be the best clubhouse guy in the Majors. He keeps everyone loose and the atmosphere light with his enthusiasm and sense of humour. His teammates love him and he’ll do whatever the Jays ask without complaining.

The only negative for the Jays so far has been the dramatically fallen velocity of BJ Ryan’s fastball. The once hard throwing closer is topping out at 87 mph, which could be trouble as the Jays start playing pivotal games vs the big boys in the August/September.

The Big Bad Yankees
That expression has taken on an entirely different meaning this season as the Yanks have been, well, bad. At the very least, average, which is unacceptable for a team built on the biggest payroll in the majors, consisting of the top 3 free agents from last winter. New York is 6-6 and in third place in the East. However, it’s been the lopsided nature of some losses that have Yankees faithful asking, “Wha???” The Yanks have lost by scores of 10-5 to Baltimore, 15-5 to Tampa Bay, and 10-2 and 22-4 vs the Indians.

What’s wrong? Basically, they can’t field, pitch, or hit. They are below average defensively at several key positions (including shortstop). Their team ERA is 6.84, good for third worst in MLB. Finally, their team batting average is .258, the 17th best in baseball. Robinson Cano (.391) and Nick Swisher (.342) have been bright spots in the lineup, but there is a huge drop off in production with the rest of the Yankees’ bats. Free agent stud, Mark Texeira, is hitting .194 and Hideki Matsui has a .179 average. Jeter and Johnny Damon are in the .275 range, while thier fill in for Arod, Cody Ransom, is batting .139!! (What were the Yanks thinking? If the Giants cut this guy, why would he be any good in pinstripes?)

The team’s most reliable returning starter, Chien-Ming Wang, is 0-3 with a 34.50 era. That’s not a joke. Although it is a cruel joke for Yankees fans. C.C Sabathia has struggled a bit, but he’ll be fine. AJ Burnett has been solid. The middle relief has been brutalized by opposing hitters so far, featuring era’s of 8.53. 8.44. and 6.75. Mariano Rivera has save 3 games in 3 opportunities.

So, considering all of this, how have the Yankees won 6 games??

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