The bonds within a soccer team are strong, especially at George School and with the Machemer family. Paul Machemer ’65 coached the varsity boys’ soccer team for over 35 years and Pam cheered the team on from the sidelines. Their son Robert Machemer ’92 continues the family legacy and is currently the varsity assistant boys’ soccer coach. Reflecting upon these bonds and family connections is what prompted Bill Becker ’22 to launch a fundraising initiative to purchase a bench in honor of Pam which will be located on the sidelines of the boys’ soccer field.
Bill’s mother Lisa Parry Becker ’89 TR and other family members have been friends with the Machemers for many years. Bill’s grandfather and Paul were both in the Class of 1965, Pam and Bill’s aunt were close friends, Robert played soccer with Bill’s uncle at George School, and until his retirement, Paul was Bill’s adviser. Upon hearing about Pam’s passing, Bill knew he wanted to do something for Paul and Robert, “I knew how difficult it was going to be and wanted to do something nice for them, to ease their pain a little, and let them know that the boys’ soccer team is here to support them.
Initially, I wanted to fund the bench from contributions from the current team but realized that inviting soccer alums to participate was a good way forward. Soccer is a collaborative sport, and everyone has to work together in order to achieve the goal–no one person decides the game. There is nothing better than doing something you love and playing soccer with your friends, which is why it is important to me that this gift comes from everyone who played boys’ soccer at George School.” Bill hopes that when Paul and others sit on the bench, they will feel Pam sitting beside them, cheering on the team.