YORK, Pa. – A great honor was announced on Wednesday by the Capital Athletic Conference, as senior William Bryan of the Marymount (Va.) University swim team was named a recipient of the Medal of Inspiration by the conference senior woman administrators and athletic directors with St. Mary's College of Maryland senior women's basketball player, Nina Haller.
"Congratulations to Will; it is well deserved and an awesome recognition," Head Coach Mike Clark said. "I'm beyond proud of him and all he's had to overcome."
The CAC Medal of Inspiration is awarded to person(s) from the CAC who have persevered through extraordinary circumstances and whose determination, devotion, and passion are exemplary, revered among their peers, and worthy of special recognition.
Bryan is a great example of inspiration with his perseverance through high school and college.
When Bryan was in 8th grade, his mother passed away from cancer. When she got sick, William was the caregiver until her passing. His father, having a high-pressure job and not quite knowing how to handle the death of his wife, turned his attention to his work, which deteriorated Bryan's relationship with his father.
Throughout much of high school, Bryan was home alone and essentially raised himself. During his senior year, a family friend finally intervened and brought him into her house. Bryan had an uphill battle to boost his grades enough to get into college, eventually ending up at Marymount. He struggled early on in his academic career, but became a Dean's List student and one of the better students on the swim team.
During his senior campaign, Bryan was a second-team All-CAC performer in the 200-freestyle relay and broke his own school records in the 100 and 200 breaststrokes. He twice qualified for the ECAC championships during his career and also earned All-CAC honors on a relay as a sophomore. At the conclusion of the school year at Marymount athletics' first 'Saintspys' award show, William was named the recipient of the Award for Resilience, along with being given the men's swim team's Coaches Award.
The CAC Medal of Inspiration, previously named the Unsung Hero Award, started up in 1997. William is the fifth Marymount student athlete to earn the honor, joining Ashlee (Courter) Rogers (2002 – Women's Basketball), Rachel Sybor (2003 – Women's Lacrosse), DJ Tayman (2007 – Men's Lacrosse), and Stephanie Flood (2013 – Women's Lacrosse).