WASHINGTON — It’s been nearly 18 months since a fatal car accident took the lives of Washington High School students Derek Arvin and Zach Blubaum, but this weekend will be another chance for reflection and celebration of the short, but full lives the boys lived.
The second annual Blu-Chip 3v3 soccer tournament in honor of the two boys will take place Sunday morning at the Sports Complex. All of the proceeds above the expenses for the tournament will go to the scholarships in both boys names. Derek Arvin has a scholarship in his name and Zach has a Pay-It-Forward fund in his honor.
Shortly after the tragic car accident that claimed both boys lives, Allen Brown, who has a son who was in the same grade as Arvin and Blubaum, received a suggestion on a way to honor the boys from his younger son, J.J., about organizing the tournament. At first, Brown didn’t jump at the idea, but after a second suggestion from J.J., Brown called the parents and got everything rolling.
The fatal crash occurred on March 9 of last year, but Brown thought it was the right thing to do even with the close timeline.
“It was really close, but we thought we really needed to do something last year,” Brown said. “Everybody thought it was a great thing and thought it was awesome that we were going to try to do it annually and help the scholarship funds. We had great weather, which I think we’re going to have again this year. We attribute that to the boys up there looking down on us. Once it started and the day went by and it went real smoothly everyone thought it was a really good thing.”
The great community support during last year’s tournament and leading up to this year’s tournament was no surprise to Derek’s father, Ray Arvin. He said in his experience the community, including all through the athletic department has always been a family atmosphere.