INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Two students will receive scholarships and one college football player will receive an award named in honor of the late Chris Beaty.
Beaty played football at Indiana University from 2000-2003. He was killed in a shooting during the riots in Indianapolis.
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After his passing a GoFundMe raised more than $200,000, Beaty’s mother, Debra Cooper, directed that money to scholarships at Indiana University and Cathedral High School. She says giving back to his community was something that Chris valued in his time on earth.
Each year the Chris Beaty Indiana Football scholarship will go to an Indiana athlete who kicks off their time on the Hoosier football team in the same way Beaty did: “They are going to give it to a walk-on football player, which Chris was,” said Cooper.
Additionally head coach Tom Allen announced they are renaming the walk-on award. It will now be referred to as the Chris Beaty Outstanding Walk-On Award.
“Chris Beaty loved Indiana, loved Indiana Football, and loved people. He was a very caring, selfless, and passionate person. I have said it before and I will say it again, Chris lived out LEO. His support was unwavering. Chris will always be a special person to our program and to the University,”Coach Tom Allen, Indiana University Football
“These kids have an opportunity to go to school and get an education if they really want to,” said Cooper.
A second scholarship was given to Beaty’s other alma mater, Cathedral High School, where every four years, a student will have their full, four-year tuition paid.
“That is why he was always such an advocate and trying to help other people because as he came along everybody was so willing to help him with something, even the little things,” said Cooper.
Cooper was a single mother who had to work to support her family, sometimes having to miss games and practices. She says Beaty’s coaches never let him miss out on time with the team.
“We will get him home, don’t worry about it we will get him home. And anytime I couldn’t come, I had to work he would, ‘Don’t worry about it mom I will get my coach to bring me home,'” said Cooper.
Beaty had always been a dedicated mentor and spent a lot of time coaching and working with kids in Indianapolis.
“He would be ecstatic, and he would love it because that is what he wanted to do. He felt like there was a lot of people in life that helped him,” said Cooper.
It brings her happiness knowing that her son’s legacy will live on impacting kids and providing them with opportunities to grow.
“Chris would be ecstatic, I mean with them dimples .. I could see him just grinning from ear to ear,” said Cooper.
The very first recipients of the Chris Beaty outstanding walk-on award are Davion Ervin-Poindexter and Christian Harris, who received their recognition at an IU football banquet last week.