Last year, when the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Romans JV (fifth and sixth grades) football team arrived to scrimmage St. Jerome, the Doylestown-based squad sported nice uniforms.
Brian Trymbiski, then a Romans sixth-grader, noticed St. Jerome players were wearing oversized T-shirts over their pads.
“When we got to the field, they didn’t have all their equipment,” Brian said. “I know how good I felt when I got my jersey. Every kid should feel that way. Every kid should have the same stuff.”
Brian decided to raise money so St. Jerome could have nice jerseys and the best equipment. His parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents chipped in, and he started a “Gift of Brotherly Love” GoFundMe page.
The Romans beat the undermanned Lions in that scrimmage, but according to the GoFundMe page, “The other team didn’t have the right pads, pants or a proper jersey of their own.”
The GoFundMe page raised $1,271.
Arrangements were made for the money to be donated during last week’s varsity (seventh and eighth grades) scrimmage between the Romans and Lions at the Holmesburg Recreation Center field.
When Tim Kilkenny – father of Romans coach Matt Kilkenny – alerted state Sen. Jimmy Dillon of the donation, the lawmaker agreed to match it.
“It was awesome,” Dillon said of the money collection.
Brian, 12, is now a seventh-grader at Lenape Middle School and a safety/quarterback on the Romans varsity football team. His parents, Brian and Carolyn, attended the Aug. 31 scrimmage.
After the scrimmage, St. Jerome gave Brian a “Lions” jersey with “Trymbiski” on the back and the No. 1.
“You’re No. 1 in our book, buddy,” said St. Jerome line coach Dave Wise.
Wise said the money will go to nice new jerseys and refurbished equipment.
Dillon was joined at the scrimmage by City Councilman Mike Driscoll and state Rep. Pat Gallagher.
“This is great stuff, guys,” Dillon said in addressing the teams after the scrimmage, “leading by example.”
St. Jerome coach Dom Cerruti thanked the Rev. Michael Reilly, pastor of St. Jerome, for supporting CYO activities. The Lions will open the season on Saturday against St. Denis.
The evening featured pizza and water ice, and Lloyd Sixsmith Sporting Goods provided commemorative “Mt. Carmel vs. St. Jerome” T-shirts for players and coaches.
“This really is what CYO is all about,” Wise said. ••