The TeamMates family is grieving the loss of two mentees. Emanuel Martinez and Yankiel Rodriguez Fontes were involved in a fatal car accident with a train on August 18, 2017. Both students were seniors at Southwest High School and longtime TeamMates mentees.
Emanuel began meeting with his mentor, Michael Sinclair, as a 4th grader at Everett Elementary School. Emanuel loved baseball and Michael fondly remembers the school field trip they went on to watch the Saltdogs play. Nothing could dampen his excitement for being at the game, not even the fact that he could only convince a concession stand worker to autograph his baseball instead of a player. “It was all the same to a young boy in love with the game.”
Michael describes Emanuel as a bright kid and talented artist with a passion for cars and his family. He felt privileged to be Emanuel’s mentor and appreciated everything Emanuel taught him.
“Emanuel had big plans and a vision for himself, and for his family and friends. His dream certainly lives on in all those who had the privilege to know him. He was such a great kid by any standard, and will be truly missed.”
Michael Sinclair, Emanuel’s mentor
Yankiel Rodriguez Fontes
Yankiel had two mentors during his time with TeamMates, beginning in 2011. Matt Kinning, who became Yankiel’s mentor in 2016, describes Yankiel as being a good kid. The two enjoyed shooting hoops during their weekly meetings. “He always whipped my butt in HORSE,” Matt recalls. “I don’t think I won one time during our year together!” Matt and Yankiel always had fun when they were together and Matt appreciates the opportunity he had to mentor Yankiel. “I think I got as much out of it as he did.”
TeamMates would like to honor the memory of Emanuel and Yankiel by creating two scholarships in each of the mentees’ names. The Emanuel Martinez Memorial Scholarship and the Yankiel Rodriguez Fontes Memorial Scholarship will be awarded to graduating mentees at the annual Spring Celebration. Emanuel and Yankiel had bright futures ahead of them and their memorial scholarships will help fellow mentees’ futures as they pursue their post-secondary goals.
TeamMates is also holding an online memorial fundraiser for Emanuel’s family to help reduce the added financial burden and extra stress during this difficult time. All donations received will assist with funeral expenses and be paid directly to the funeral home.
You can help honor the memory of Emanuel and Yankiel by donating to the scholarship or memorial fund below.