2018 Wandtke Award – Jamal Fennell
Every year at Bishop Kearney a student athlete from the senior class is selected for the Steven A. Wandtke Award. Before attending Bishop Kearney Steven attended St. Ambrose school, and like his big brother Keith, Steve chose Bishop Kearney for high school in the fall of 1992. Steven made the most of his high school experience while at Kearney. He made friends easily, was a good listener, had a great sense of humor, and enjoyed hanging out with friends, and his favorite class at Kearney was English. Steven was a well rounded young man who worked hard in the classroom and he also was fierce competitor on the basketball court for Coach Ed Nietopski. Many of Steven’s friends and family still recall his memorable dunks and the numerous victories where Steven always seemed to come through with the game on the line.
Steven’s strong work ethic, humble nature, and his dedication to strive for excellence served Steven well as he went to college at Niagara University. After graduating from Niagara, Steven was diagnosed with cancer in the spring of 2002. Despite a courageous battle and many prayers from the Kearney community, Stephen passed away that fall. Steven Wandtke’s memory lives on every year with the presentation of this award.
There is a plaque that is visible outside the Ed Nietopski gymnasium which reads:
He was a selfless team player who strived for athletic excellence. He was focused on the task at hand with consistency, reliability, determination and an innate ability to rise to challenges. He demonstrated a true respect for the game, his coach and his teammates.
The Wandtke Award is the highest honor bestowed on a student athlete in the senior class.The 2018 recipient of the Steven A. Wandkte Award is Jamal Fennell. Congratulations to Jamal! He is a leader in the classroom, on the court, and in the community.