Randleman football coach Shane Timmons has been dealing with a family medical situation during this season. (File photo)
RANDLEMAN – Randleman has reached the middle of its football season with tremendous success, but coach Shane Timmons has more pressing matters on his mind.
His daughter Ophie has been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor.
“I’m coaching each day like it’s my last day on earth,” Timmons said. “It’s a great way to live. It’s the hand that I was dealt.”
Timmons’ attention has been detoured from his team at times during the past few weeks.
Ophie’s condition is called Ependymoma, and she has a Stage II cancer. Now almost 21 months old, she’s the youngest of two daughters of the coach and his wife, Ashley.
Randleman is the only undefeated football team in Randolph County. The Tigers (5-0) are off this week before beginning Piedmont Athletic Conference play Sept. 29 at Wheatmore.
During the week of the third game of the season, the Timmons family learned of the diagnosis. An initial surgery resulted in removal of about 75 percent of the problem area, so an oncology team has been working to develop the best plan amid chemotherapy treatments.
“We’re going to have to explore some other options,” Timmons said. “The prognosis could be better and the prognosis could be worse.”
Timmons missed the Tigers’ 56-0 demolition of host Cedar Ridge on Sept. 1. He also has been away for some of the program’s junior varsity action.
He credits members of his coaching staff with filling in and taking expanded roles. He said he appreciates the outpouring of support from the community.
“Crisis brings the best out of people,” he said. “We just got to hang on to that.”
Timmons was an offensive coordinator for Randleman’s football team before leaving the district. He’s in his fourth season as head coach of the Tigers.
From a coaching standpoint, Timmons said it’s important that his players witness him carry out his duties the best that he can.
“They have to see you get up off the mat,” he said.
Last week, a GoFundMe page (“Fight for Ophie”) to support the Timmons family was organized by Randleman athletics director Jake Smith.
Prep football — Week 6
Friday night’s games
Southwestern Randolph at Asheboro
Eastern Randolph at Parkwood