The Mansfield community continued Saturday to support the family of a high school football coach who died in early February.
Daniel Maberry died in Feb. 3 at age 47 after a 2-year battle with cancer. Maberry was with the Mansfield Independent School District for two decades and was named head football coach at Mansfield High School before the 2016 football season.
Now, the town is banding together to help the Maberry family in hopes of paying off the family’s home mortgage. An online raffle is open until April 25 at Maberrystrong.com and organizers said they hoped to sell 3,000 tickets.
Those who picked up their barbeque orders at a fundraiser Saturday in Masfield were encouraged to check out the website for the raffle.
Jim Angel of Mansfield knew Maberry from the time his boys, a Mansfield High School senior and sophomore, were in middle school.
“We started this fundraiser two years ago. Our expectation was to really not have to worry about raising this type of fundraiser,” Angel said. “We really thought he was going to kick this, and I think everybody was extremely surprised because he battles so hard.”
Maberry was first diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in January 2018. He was forced to sit out of the 2018 season while he received treatment.
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Those who picked up orders Saturday included several parents of Maberry’s students and players over the years.
“During the short time that my son went to Mansfield High, he was coached by him and taught by him. He always remembered my son,” Meka Stanley said. “My son always referred to him often as somebody he looked up to and would go to when he was struggling or if he had something going on.”
Others, like Lynnette Henshaw, said cancer also touched their family. She described the Maberrys as "an amazing family."
“He [Maberry] loved the Lord. We just want to give,” Henshaw said.
In past interviews, those close with Maberry said his greatest loves in life were football, faith and family. His widow and two young children are who organizers said they would continue to support as they cope with his loss.
“There’s a mother and two daughters that have a gap,” Angel said, holding back tears Saturday. “There’s not one of us out here that cannot put ourselves in that same spot if we lost our spouse or they lost their spouse, and we’ve all got kids the same age.”
Another barbecue fundraiser will held Sunday at 2034 Cannon Drive in Mansfield from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. or until they are out. Information on the raffle fundraiser can be found here.