Friday, December 14, 2012

Don E. Marshall January 9, 1985 - December 12, 2012

DOYLESTOWN — Don Marshall was more than just one of Delaware Valley College’s top three all-time wide receivers, mentioned in the same breath with Rich Gear and Marshall’s teammate David Carmon.

Marshall was one of the faces of the Aggies’ rebuilding process in 2003 that helped launch the Decade of Dominance, a 92-24 record and six Middle Atlantic Conference titles for the program the past 10 seasons
For all the battles that Marshall and the Aggies won on the field, many in the DelVal community would consider trading all that success to have Marshall back for just one more day.
Marshall lost his most meaningful off-the-field battle and succumbed Wednesday to pancreatic cancer. He was 27 years old, a mere six years after his senior class completed its career in 2006 with a 41-7 record, still the winningest group in school history.

As the only DelVal receiver with at least 1,000 receiving yards twice in a career (2004 and 2005), Marshall finished his career third in receptions (159) and receiving yards (3,055), along with second in touchdown receptions (29).
Gifted with size and speed, Marshall also was a threat anywhere on the field, as he caught three of the five longest touchdown passes in school history: the longest, 98 yards in 2004; the third-longest, 95 yards in 2003; and the fifth-longest, 89 yards in 2005.

To Marshall’s teammates and coaches, however, he meant so much more than just his accomplishments, including a three-time all-MAC selection, an all-East region selection and a senior co-captain.
DelVal head coach Jim Clements said that as passionate as most players are about football, Marshall’s passion was on another level and enabled him to lead by example.

Marshall’s leadership, along with the experienced senior class that had made DelVal’s first two trips of five to the NCAA Division III playoffs, helped Clements transition in 2006 to head coach from defensive coordinator after previous head coach G.A. Mangus was named offensive coordinator at Division I Middle Tennessee State in the offseason.
“Having Don (Marshall) and that group of older players was a comfort to me,” Clements said. “He and those seniors really helped support me that first year as head coach.”

For all of Marshall’s success, humility was one of his best qualities, said Mangus, DelVal head coach from 2002-05 and the current quarterbacks coach at the University of South Carolina.
“It would have been easy for even a less-accomplished player to let it go to his own head, but (Marshall) never let that happen,” Mangus said.
Carmon said his bond with Marshall involved how their lives paralleled each other’s, at DelVal and later.
Carmon reminisced about how they spent every Friday night before a game going over game film or notes about opponents.
“It didn’t matter if it was at my apartment, (Marshall’s) dorm room, or if we were on the road with an overnight trip, we would room together,” Carmon said. “On game day, whenever the defense focused on him, it gave me chances to make plays, and the same for him — that made both of us successful.”
When Marshall first felt something wasn’t right with his health this past spring, he was an assistant coach at his high school alma mater, Bladensburg (Md.) High School.
Carmon, an assistant coach at Bernards High School in Bernardsville, N.J., could only feel empathy for his teammate and sympathy for Marshall’s family.
“As far away as we are from each other, we were still doing the same thing, coaching,” Carmon said. “Knowing that he passed away at that age, you feel as if it could have been anyone else. It makes you appreciate what you have and the good times we had.”
This makes the passing of Marshall, who by all accounts had continued doing all the right things in his life, that much sadder.
“I still can’t believe that it actually has happened,” Mangus said. “As close as I was to those players, and as young as (Marshall) is, it’s just not supposed to happen that way.”

By Tom Pfaff Correspondent

1 comment:

  1. Marshall my heart and prayers are with you and you're family during this difficult time...I know its hard right now but trust God make no mistakes he his taking the best people from this world to watch over those of us that have so much more to do and get tight.I would also like to leave you with this in the word of God it be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord :) Don E. Marshall is in good hands now.