Coaches remember Juarez’s love of soccer
Brighton Standard Blade
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
BRIGHTON – “He was a fantastic kid with a great smile.”
That was among the memories and anecdotes from former Brighton High School soccer coach J Doehring about recent graduate Daniel Juarez.
Juarez, who graduated from BHS this spring, died Sept. 26. His services were Oct. 2, and burial was at Fairview Cemetery.
“He loved the game of soccer and was constantly playing,” Doehring said. “There were times when he would come to practice, then leave and go play until dark at Benedict Park.”
Juarez played on the varsity team at BHS all four years, and he earned letters each season. As a team captain, Juarez scored a goal and had three assists for the Bulldogs last year.
Juarez played the last two seasons for Kevin Barnes.
“Daniel was a very charismatic young man, both on and off the field,” Barnes said. “He had a way about him that was inviting and soft spoken with a warm, if not mischievous smile. On the pitch, he was a gifted player with strong skills. He very much loved the game.”
Doehring said Juarez’ involvement in soccer wasn’t limited to the boys season in the fall.
“He helped manage the girls team, in part, I think, just so he could be around the game,” Doehring said. “He was one of those kids who had a contagious demeanor about him. Daniel was often the one I would text and tell him to tell the boys, ‘let’s play.’ He was usually one of the first ones there and the last to leave.”
Juarez was born June 28, 1994, in Chihuahua, Mexico, to Benjamin Juarez and Maria Rodriguez. He is survived by his parents, paternal grandfather, Benjamin Juarez, of Denver; maternal grandmother, Rosario Aguilar, of Mexico; and sister, Erika Juarez, of Brighton.
“One thing I recall about Daniel is that following his final varsity match as a senior, he was one of the last guys to leave the pitch,” Barnes said. “I can understand, because as an athlete, it’s tough to say goodbye to something that has been so much a part of your life. He typically attended our informal summertime kick-a-round sessions at the school and often stopped by during training.”
A memorial fund has been established to help Juarez’ family with the funeral costs. To contribute, stop by any Valley Bank and Trust office with cash or check made out to ‘Benefit of Daniel Juarez,’ account number 053015345.
“Daniel was a leader and was my captain the last year I was there,” said Doehring. “He was fantastic with younger kids as well and treated my own children very well with encouragement and praise in their soccer playing.
“This is a huge bummer for our family,” Doehring added. “You get so close to these kids and then something like this happens. I will choose to remember his smile and his love for the game when I think of him.”
Barnes first met Juarez four years ago but had seen him play for the Platte Valley Soccer Club before Barnes became the high school coach. Juarez also lent his time to the Brighton Boys & Girls Club.
“At 18 years old, he was just getting started,” Barnes said. “Unfortunately, his passing came tragically. I’m hoping the legacy he leaves behind for his teammates and friends is to embrace life and make good choices. Life is best if treasured and lived to its fullest through those choices.”