By Greg Bates
DE PERE – When Finer joined his team for the ceremony at halftime of De Pere’s game on Sept. 16, it was special for a number of reasons.
The players were reunited with their coach, who they cherished.
The guys all love to get together and rehash their glory days of 1992. They don’t see each other as often these days and it could be one of the last times as a group with their coach.
Finer, 62, was diagnosed with stage 4 lymphoma about a year and a half ago and was told he’d have about two years to live.
“It will probably be my last time with the guys,” Finer said.
Always upbeat, it was a gut punch to his former players when they were told shortly after his diagnosis.
The celebration was a cherished moment for his former players to share with their coach.
“I think everybody recognizes where Coach is at and I think everybody just appreciates the opportunity that we can celebrate this and it’s just living in the moment and enjoying it,” said Yenchesky, who during the ceremony held the state title trophy. “I think that’s why we had such as good of a turnout as we did. …
“Coach is realistic about it. He knows where he’s at but he still shows up every day with a big, huge smile on his face.”
Berres was honored to be at the ceremony and hang out with his former teammates and beloved coach.
“It meant everything for us guys to get together with him, and I know it meant the world to him as well,” Berres said. “Obviously, we’re all pulling for him. It was just a special night to get back together and see the guys, reminisce on old times and for Coach in particular, to hug him and tell him how much he means to us. Truly a special night. It’s one I know none of us will ever forget.”
By Greg Bates