Pleasant Valley pays tribute to Schyler Herman
Pleasant Valley High School held the Schyler Herman Memorial Soccer Game on Monday night to honor an athlete who passed away after a battle with leukemia on Oct. 31, 2018.
The varsity goalkeeper’s jersey and number, double zero, is now retired, making her the last Pleasant Valley athlete to wear the number. The game featured players from Pleasant Valley’s boys and girls soccer teams.
“She was an unbelievable athlete. Every time I saw her play, she was just phenomenal at her age. She was a fantastic goalkeeper,” Alex Wunder, Pleasant Valley boys head soccer coach, said.
“This event is huge,” Wunder said. “That’s the main goal right now is for these girls and boys to have fun. They lost a friend. The girls lost a teammate that they have grown up with. It’s great to see the community come together for this.”
Some of Schyler’s teammates have known her since early childhood. Danielle DeMarco had met her when they were 6 years old through playing basketball. Rylee Robinson had played soccer with her since 2009.
“She was always my keeper. She was always right behind me since I’m a defender. Losing her was really hard,” Robinson said.
Despite the sadness around the event, both Robinson and DeMarco showed a sense of hope. They both pointed out how the community united in a time of need.
“It’s good because it shows that everybody can come together and support one another,” DeMarco said.
They both agreed that there would never be another Schyler, as a person or a goalkeeper.
Derek Strohl, the head girls varsity soccer coach at Pleasant Valley, was strongly impacted by Schyler.
“Her courage, her fight with the battle she had with leukemia, the passion she had for soccer. I’d like to think I had that passion when I was her age. She had the “it” factor. She pushed herself and her teammates. She was overall a great kid,” Strohl said.
“You see all the negativity in the news, whether it’s political or gun violence. Even though the event is because she passed away, having the PV community, the surrounding communities, the school district come together in a time to show support and honor her memory is fantastic,” Strohl said.
Even though Strohl has been involved with soccer since he was 8 years old, Schyler was one of the best players he ever saw.
Schyler’s parents started a foundation called the #schylerstrong foundation. The goal is to raise money and bring awareness for research. They also want to help families at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
Sherrie Herman, Schyler’s mother, was thankful for the great turnout for the memorial game.
“I’m just absolutely amazed how the community and friends and family have all come together to remember her. I’m extremely honored that the school is going to be retiring her number tonight, the number that she wore so proudly on the field as she went into the goal for every game,” Herman said.