NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

August 28, 2013

In memory of Mike

Amesbury cross-country team looks to pay tribute to former coach

(Continued)

Bissaillon said that he hopes to name a September freshman/sophomore race after Farmer in the near future; but for him, keeping things going is the best tribute he can pay his friend.

“Mike would be happy that we’re trying to keep the program going for him,” he said. “The kids have been great. Hopefully I can continue to inspire them.”

In a league as competitive as the CAL, Bissaillon was deeply moved when all of the track programs came out to AHS in April for “Miles for Mike,” a fundraiser to help Farmer with his day-to-day expenses while he battled cancer.

“You could see from all the support he had gotten in the spring that he had affected a lot of people, which is nice,” said Bissaillon. “Over the years, he had done so much for the kids in an unassuming way. He was just a quiet, humble guy.”

Now it is time for the CAL cross-country teams to chase each other once again. Farmer would have it no other way.

“We’ve got a big transition here, not only for me but for the kids,” said Bissaillon. “I’m sure it’s on their minds too. He did things his way, but my way is a lot like his. I’m respectful of that and they know that the coach was a friend of mine. We all understand each other in those regards, which is good.”

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