AMHERST, N.Y. — "A perfectionist, but a very loyal and good person," Sweet Home High School Principal Scott Martin described Coach John Faller.
Retired Sweet Home High School football and lacrosse coach John Faller died unexpectedly at age 70. A gentle giant, a teddy bear at heart - those are some of the words used to describe Coach Faller at his memorial service at Sweet Home High School.
"He set the example for us that we followed. We would have done anything for him," said Casey Kacz, who was the quarterback for Coach Faller's 2006-2008 football team.
He brought the Sweet Home football and lacrosse teams to many victories with former Assistant Coach Mike Faulks right by his side.
"He made everyone feel like part of the team. Even if you were on the bench or on the field, we were all in it together," Faulks said.
"The football team drove this campus for a decade," said Martin.
The memorial event started with an alumni lacrosse game where players showed off the skills Faller taught them, but they learned much more than a game.
"All these things that he lived his like by is ingrained in all of us," Kacz said.
Hundreds gathered to share how Coach Faller touched their lives.
"There's kids here that have been out of school for probably 30 years that are coming back," said Faulks.
"It'll be good to catch up with people and talk about stories and memories of Coach," Kacz said.
The alumni lacrosse game will be played annually in Coach Faller's honor.
"We have to move on and live in his memory. That's all we can do," Faulks said.