Delta Charter High School officially dedicated the football field at the Delta Charter High Sports Complex as Elias Gamez Memorial Football Field in honor of the Dragons' two-year team captain.
For more than three years, Elias battled Hodgkin lymphoma, and during his freshman and sophomore years at Delta Charter High, his fight against cancer served as an inspiration to the sports teams at the high school, including the football team, for which he was a team captain in its inaugural year and last year as well.
Elias died in April, and the Dragons have retired his jersey and will continue to display his No. 1 on a banner behind the north end zone.
On Saturday, his mother, Jacqui Valle; his sisters, Larue, 8, and Elisa, 6; his father, David Gamez; and his stepfather, Carl Price, met at the 50-yard line for a brief ceremony acknowledging the New Jerusalem School District’s official naming of the field for Elias.
“It’s such an honor to see how much the community and the school loved him and respected him,” Valle said. “Just being here, you feel his presence.”
Gamez said he was overwhelmed by the school’s love for his son.
“I’m at a loss for words,” he said. “For the school to honor him, to dedicate the field and retire his number on top of that, it’s a beautiful thing.”