Playing for Harry

 Playing for Harry

On April 25th, 2012 Utah Soccer Alliance tragically lost one of its Future stars, with the passing of Harrison Thomas Koller.

Harry played on the USA U6 “Blue Ninjas” soccer team. He was passionate about soccer and played whenever possible. As a tribute to someone that loved soccer so much USA has established a scholarship fund in Harry’s name. The Playing for Harry Scholarship Fund will cover the cost of a player’s fees that wants to play in the USA Academy or Competition programs. This will allow Harry to keep playing through the recipient of the scholarship.

Harry is missed by his Blue Ninjas teammates, coach, and Blue Ninjas family members-who had this to say about Harry:

From Max- "I will miss playing soccer with you Harry, and jumping on the tramp. Thanks for being my friend."

From Jack- "Harry was really good outside the goal."

From Emerson- “Harry was very playful and very GOODful. He was a really nice boy and very careful.”

From Brooks- “Harry was nice, and a good soccer player, and, oh yeah, I am suppose to find him at recess to play."

From Macey- “Harry scored lots of goals. I loved him as a friend.”

From Miriam-“Harry asked lots of questions. He was super duper fast. He always got to the ball. He made games fun. I liked to play with him.”

From Eden- "I wasn't on Harry's team for very long, but he was a good soccer player. He was really good at kicking the ball."

From the coach-“Harry was a joy to coach. Harry (and Jack) joined the Blue Ninjas in the fall 2011 soccer season. It was evident from day one that the two boys were inseparable. They partnered up in drills, wanted to be on the same team during scrimmages, and I soon realized that they played better during games when they were on the field together. They seemed to have each other’s back, so I just went with it. Harry and Jack got Max, the other member of “The Three Musketeers,” to join the Blue Ninjas for the spring season. The three of them loved playing soccer together. Harry loved soccer and was quite the little athlete. He always seemed excited and ready to practice. He was also quite the competitor. As a result, he was developing and improving weekly. He was fast, tenacious, and had good ball control-which meant that he usually emerged from the pack with the ball driving down the field to score. On the field during games you could see him processing and learning the game. His fellow Blue Ninjas love him both as a teammate and a friend. My favorite memory of Harry comes from our last practice. I had the kids play a racing game to beat each other’s time. The kids are pretty competitive so they joked around about who would get the fastest time, and all assumed that it would be a certain boy. Harry was the last kid up for his final lap. As Harry raced around the track, you could see his determination to win, and he did-- coming in with the fastest time by about half a second. I’ll never forget the huge smile on his face as he found out that he was the fastest Blue Ninja that day. You could see a real sense of pride and accomplishment on his face. As a father and a soccer coach, I guess that I take for granted that I’m the one that is helping to instruct my kids and team. The events of the past week have helped me realize or reinforce that the goodness of these little ones, like Harry, rubs off on all of those who interact with them and they bless the lives of all those around them. I believe that I’m a better person, father, and coach for having coached and interacted with Harry Koller, and I will miss him.”

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