LAWRENCEBURG — It hurts the family of Seth Carnahan to realize that he would have been a high school senior this month had he not drowned in North Elkhorn Creek four years ago at the age of 13.
But Seth's family came to Anderson County High School on Saturday to help organize the second annual Seth Carnahan Memorial Bowl.
The game was a football contest between the Anderson County Middle School Mustangs — for which Seth played in 2009 — and the Union Middle School Raiders. Several hundred people attended.
The money raised at the game will go toward the construction of football facilities at Anderson County Middle, which currently borrows the high school stadium when it's available.
Seth's football jersey, No. 11, was carried to the 50-yard line before kickoff, and 11 balloons were released into the sky.
"It was tough to lose Seth. Some of the players broke down and cried at practices," said Chris Glass, who coached Seth at the middle school before becoming principal at the high school. "But it was sort of their rallying cry, to come together as a team and play the game for Seth. We took his jersey with us to every game."
That season, the Mustangs went undefeated in regular-season play, making it to the state finals before losing to Bowling Green Middle School, Glass said.
Seth's parents, Lisa Lamb and Mike Carnahan, were busy Saturday working at the admissions gate and selling programs and T-shirts. They said it felt good to give back to the middle school football program.
"They've done so much to help us," said Carnahan, a retired Kentucky State Police sergeant. "It meant everything in the world to us to see that they hadn't forgotten him and they were keeping his memory alive."
Anderson County won the day's first game, between eighth-graders, 22-14. Union won the second game, between seventh-graders, 16-0.