Clay Jacob Glass, 17, died Feb. 11, 2017. The award-winning linebacker for the Sallisaw Black Diamond football team was killed in a sports vehicle crash.
The loss of the young man, a role model to many, was of course devastating to his family and friends. Now his parents, Damon and Debra Glass, want him remembered as he lived life…by helping others.
Damon, his father, explained his son wanted desperately to go to college, but did not want to put that financial responsibility on his parents. He was trying hard to obtain a football scholarship from a good university, especially OU. He wanted to play football for OU.
“It was scary for a kid his age,” Damon said about Clay making plans for college and a future in football. “He wanted to go to Carl Albert (State College) for two years, and then go on to a big school.”
Damon said the family has decided on a mission to honor their son's memory and have created a scholarship in Clay’s name.
“We want to help under privileged kids go to college,” he said.
His mother Debra added about the scholarship, “It makes me feel like I’m helping him.”
Information about the Clay Glass Memorial Scholarship can be found at www.clayglassmemorialscholarship.com. The first offering will be a $1,000 scholarship to a Sallisaw 2018 senior.
The site was built by Chris Berton of Giant Door Media. The website is also sponsored by Michael Shupert of H & R Block.
Berton said the website has complete information about the scholarship, about how to apply for the scholarship and how to donate to the scholarship fund. Donations are tax deductible, he said.
Hopefully, this is only the beginning. Berton said it is hoped the scholarship fund will grow, and the scholarship will grow to include all students in Sequoyah County and all sports.
The website also has a photo history of Clay’s life and a list of his accomplishments as a Sallisaw Black Diamond. A splash site, at www.relentles36.com, will also direct the searcher to the scholarship site.
Berton said the website has attracted much attention after launching on Sept. 25. It is averaging about 150 hits a day.
Relentless is just one of the words used to define Clay and 36 was his sports number. That number has been retired at Sallisaw Schools.
“Relentless” is also the word that can be found emblazoned on T-shirts sold for $24 to raise scholarship funds. Damon said other merchandise will soon be offered on the website such as cups and glasses. Relentless, meaning never give up, was tattooed on the young man’s forearm and describes his attitude toward life, his parents said.
Clay’s parents said they have received many letters remembering their son and recalling how he helped others, how he would not tolerate bullying and offered a hand to whoever was in need.
“He left his imprint,” Damon said. “He was always helping other people.”
Debra added, “We were super blessed to have him. He was going for something great.”
Now his parents and friends hope to do the same for others, in Clay’s memory.
Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director
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