On August 18, a dear friend of wheelchair tennis, Cheryl (Haus) Hamrick died peacefully in the presence of her family in Mobile, Alabama after a battle with cancer took her life. Cheryl was a joy to the wheelchair tennis community. She was a beautiful lady, generous, giving and always smiling. Those wheelchair players, organizers, and the Quickie family that knew her will miss her greatly.
She was such a friend to all the players; they knew she cared about them and many of them asked if they could write a few words to express how much she meant to them. Here are a few of them.
Roxanne Bingham, Volunteer at the Cajun Classic wrote:
"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay his life down for his friends" - John 15:13
When you think of Cheryl you instantly smile. She brought joy and laughter to so many lives. She always had a great story to tell about players because she spent so much time with each one. This year at the Cajun Classic even when Cheryl wasn’t feeling well she put on her rubber boots to slosh through the mud so everyone would be fed on time. May her family know she was loved by all and will truly be missed."
Marilu Major, Chairman of the Cajun Classic Wheelchair Tennis Tournament, wrote "Cheryl will surely be missed. Not only was she a great help to us as a tournament Committee, she was a big support to all the players".
Harlon Mathews, wheelchair tennis player, wrote:
"I would like to share a few thoughts about Cheryl. I became acquainted with her at the Pensacola tournament and the Cajun Classic while she was a rep for Quickie/Sunrise Medical in that part of Southern Region. Cheryl always had a smile and ALWAYS had a "helping heart". At Pensacola she would greet our "Henry Havoc" team and greet us each year with a "Harlon, it is so great to see your Team here in your matching uniforms. With great sincerity she would ask is there anyone on your Team that could really use a new chair? Because of Cheryl’s giving spirit two of our players received new tennis chairs that gave them the inspiration and confidence to keep playing. She was not just doing her job. She was doing what made her and others happy.
Jeanie Peabody, volunteer for the Cajun Classic, wrote:
Cheryl was as much a part of the Cajun Classic wheelchair tournament as the organizers and the players. She was a friend to everyone and generous beyond belief. My fondest memory is of Cheryl standing in the Food Tent, bright red lipstick and bright red fingernails dishing up plate after plate of breakfast, lunch and dinner, smiling and greeting each player as they went by. Of course that was not her real job. She just stepped in and helped where ever she was needed. That was the spirit of Cheryl Hamrick. She meant so much to all of us and she will be missed.
Pat Mulvihill, wheelchair tennis player, wrote:
"It was a real shock. She was a tremendous person who works tirelessly to accommodate a great number of wheelchair tennis players…….she always had a smile on her face and she was such a jovial person to be around. Quickie could not have a better Rep than Cheryl Hamrick. The position can be replaced but the person cannot. Cheryl will live on in the hearts and memories of many players, coaches and friends. She touched so many lives and will continue to do so for years to come.
Dawn Swanson, Director of Food at the Cajun Classic wrote:
Cheryl Hamrick always had a big smile on her face and was full of life. Year after year she worked many hours under the Food Tent at the Cajun Classic Wheelchair Tennis Tournament in Baton Rouge., LA. She was always the first one to arrive at 6:30am to get the coffee going for the Players and Staff and the last one to leave at night, making sure everyone was served a hot meal. She was dedicated to every athlete, making sure each person’s needs were met whether it be a special food item or help with a wheelchair. Cheryl will truly be missed, but always remembered.