Broncs, Panthers unite to support Ethan Asher

‘Nothing short of amazing’

Posted 10/17/19

The Powell-Cody rivalry runs deep, but support for Panther quarterback Ethan Asher runs deeper.

Cody Broncs joined Powell Panthers in supporting Asher during the cross-county football game Friday …

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Broncs, Panthers unite to support Ethan Asher

‘Nothing short of amazing’

Posted

The Powell-Cody rivalry runs deep, but support for Panther quarterback Ethan Asher runs deeper.

Cody Broncs joined Powell Panthers in supporting Asher during the cross-county football game Friday night, raising $2,700 for Asher and his family. Forgoing their blue and gold, many Bronc fans wore Team Ethan shirts.

“I haven’t been a part of a Cody/Powell rivalry of this magnitude in my 30 years,” said Scott McKenzie, PHS athletic director. “Cody and Powell have always had great respect for one another and have had some magical moments over the years. None compare to the #EthanStrong movement this season.”

Panther head football coach Aaron Papich agreed.

“It’s amazing, because most of the time, football is the most important thing in a rivalry like this,” he said. “But not this game. I think it was community, it was Ethan, it was the Asher family — that’s what was important. To see that support, that love, you just kind of take a step back. It’s pretty awesome to see that, especially from Cody. It’s something I’ll always remember, and I know our team and the community will as well.”

McKenzie said he’s found himself speechless “and in complete awe” as support for Asher has flooded in from around Wyoming and beyond, with tens of thousands of dollars raised to help the family with medical costs and other expenses.

Thousands of people have followed Asher’s progress following the Aug. 27 rollover that left him severely injured.

“We are honored and humbled like we never knew we could be,” Tiffani Asher wrote in a message to the Tribune. “God is truly doing a miracle, not only in Ethan’s story, but in so many lives that have joined our journey. It feels like everyone is a part of it as well.”

The Panthers dedicated this season to Asher prior to the team’s Zero Week opener, a 32-17 win over Riverton. After that game, and in every game since, players from both teams have gathered at midfield to pray for Asher’s continued recovery.

“When I see the support for Ethan from these other teams, and to see it from Cody, it just blows my mind,” said Panther senior captain Brody Karhu. “At the end of the game, when we all got to pray, that means more to us than any game ever could. It’s just a blessing that we can get together after a game — even being rivals — and praise God for the miracles that Ethan has received.”

Friday night is the Panthers’ final home game of the season; it’s also a night the team will honor its seniors. Karhu said No. 3 won’t be far from anyone’s thoughts when the team takes the field against Green River.

“We’re really excited to take the field one more time at home in Ethan’s honor,” Karhu said. “He can’t be with us on the field physically, but Ethan will definitely be in our hearts, no doubt about that.”

Asher is now in Denver, undergoing physical therapy and occupational therapy at Craig Hospital.

“We will continue to wait as marvelous team of physicians at Craig pushes Ethan to the limit, and then as Ethan, in all his fighter personality, pushes once more,” Tiffani Asher wrote in a Saturday update on Facebook. “Every day gets better. Every moment gets sweeter. God is not done folks!”

The family shared a video of Ethan talking and laughing with his younger sister, Payton.

McKenzie called the support from the great state of Wyoming “nothing short of amazing.” He said it speaks volumes to many different aspects.

“It speaks to the Ashers and their faith. It speaks to our community and the respect other communities have for ours,” he said. “It speaks to Ethan’s character and how great of an individual he is.”

He said it also speaks to PHS, the football team and the image carried here in Powell.

“And it speaks to how small Wyoming really is when it comes to taking care of each other,” McKenzie said. “It is the best place to live … hands down!”

The Asher family said they’re humbled and so grateful for the outpouring of love shown for Ethan from across the state and nation. 

“From signed footballs from teams across the state, to cards and posters of encouragement, to the generosity of funds that have come in, we are moved,” Tiffani Asher said. “We know that God has a plan and purpose for these funds and can’t thank our amazing state enough.”

In an update Wednesday, the family repeated the message: “God is not done.”

“It is going to be a memorable story when the final chapter has been written!” McKenzie said.

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